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Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity

Good nutrition, regular physical activity, and a healthy body weight are essential parts of a person’s overall health and well-being. A healthful diet, regular physical activity, and achieving and maintaining a healthy weight are also important to managing many health conditions so they do not worsen over time.

Adult Physical Activity by Education, 2014

The proportion of adults aged 25 years and over who met the guidelines for aerobic physical activity and for muscle-strengthening activity in 2014 increased as education level increased (age adjusted).

Data:

  • Less than high school: 6.9%
  • High school: 12.9%
  • Some college: 19.8%
  • Associate degree: 20.1%
  • 4-year college degree: 29.1%
  • Advanced degree: 31.3%

Data source: National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), CDC/NCHS.

Healthy People 2020 Targets

Physical Activity

In 2014, 21.3% of adults aged 18 years and over met the current Federal physical activity guidelines for aerobic physical activity and muscle-strengthening activity (age adjusted).

Most Recent (2014): 21.3% (age adjusted)

Target: 20.1%

Target has been met.

Data Source: National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), CDC/NCHS.

Adult Obesity

In 2013–14, 37.7% of adults aged 20 years and over were obese (age adjusted).

Most Recent (2013–14): 37.7% (age adjusted)

*Target: 30.5%

19.1% decrease needed.

Data Source: National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), CDC/NCHS.

Obesity in Children and Adolescents

In 2013–14, 17.2% of children and adolescents aged 2–19 years were considered obese.

Most Recent (2013–14): 17.2%

*Target: 14.5%

15.7% decrease needed.

Data Source: National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), CDC/NCHS.

Daily Vegetable Intake

In 2009–12, 0.77 cup equivalents of total vegetables per 1,000 calories for persons 2 years and over was the mean daily intake (age adjusted).

Most Recent (2009–12):

Target: 1.16 cup equivalent per 1,000 calories 

50.6% increase needed

Data Source: National Health Interview Survey (NHIS), CDC/NCHS.

*Target is based on a 4-year estimate, and the most recent (2013-14) 2-year estimate will be replaced by a 4-year estimate later in the decade.