Look How Quickly the U.S. Got Fat (1985-2010 Animated Map)

25 brief, delicious years
obesity-map-GIF-jh.gif

This shows the percentages of the U.S. population medically defined as obese, which means a body mass index of 30 or greater. BMI isn't an ideal metric to evaluate obesity, but it's still what the U.S. standardly uses.

By now everyone knows obesity is a serious issue, but it always helps me to see things moving and in color, and makes the "epidemic" terminology make sense. Meanwhile, through 2012, no state has met the CDC's nationwide goal to reduce obesity to 15 percent. According to a Gallup poll out this morning, here are the least and most obese metropolitan areas:

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So if we all just move to Colorado we should be fine.

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James Hamblin, MD, is a senior editor at The Atlantic. He writes the health column for the monthly magazine and hosts the video series If Our Bodies Could Talk.

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