Pennsylvania shows slight improvement in US obesity rankings

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – A new report says Pennsylvania had the nation’s 24th highest adult obesity rate in 2015, a slight improvement from the prior year.

The report released Thursday by the Trust for America’s Health and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation found that 30 percent of adults in Pennsylvania were obese last year, the same as Maine.

Pennsylvania was ranked 20th in 2014. In 1990, Pennsylvania’s adult obesity rate was just under 14 percent and barely above 20 percent in 2000.

The report notes that Pennsylvania, unlike some states, lacks physical activity standards for schoolchildren. Obesity is defined as an excessively high amount of body fat compared to lean body mass.

The report also says 11 percent of children in Pennsylvania live in “food-insecure” households, meaning they have limited access to adequate food and nutrition.

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