Minnesota has put on a few pounds, per latest national fat survey [MAP]


Fatmouse.jpg
Wikipedia
If Minnesotans were mice, 25.7 percent of us would be this big guy on the left. Zoom out and look at all Americans, and it's 35.7 percent.
SEE ALSO
- Minnesota is the state of the future, Gallup says
- Minnesotans have third-highest well-being, Gallup finds
- Minnesota is fat, but not compared to the rest of the fat United States

Your scale's not broken. In 2011, Minnesota got fatter.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the results of its 2011 obesity survey Monday, and in the past year, Minnesota has jumped up a weight class. In 2010, we were in the lowest percentage category (20 to 24 percent obese), swapping diet tips with slim states like Colorado (sveltest in 2010 and 2011) and California. Now, in the 25 to 30 percent middle category, we're more likely stocking up on diet soda.

The numbers say that a full quarter of the state is obese, up from 24.8 percent in 2010 to 25.7 percent in 2011. The CDC cautions against directly comparing 2010 and 2011 data, because between the years they added cell numbers to the polling roster. But even without the exact percentages, our status relative to the rest of the country shows that 2011 was a year of loosening belts.

We're still leaner than most of the south, from Texas to South Carolina. Closer to home, our jeans are smaller than Michigan's and Missouri's. And we're nine percent less obese than the fattest state in the union, Mississippi (also the state with the fewest visits to dentists in the past year). It's a dubious distinction -- 'I'm less obese than you' -- but take what we can get.

brfss-self-reported-obesity-2011.jpg
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Is this yellow slimming?
Because respondents self-report their height and weight -- and tend to underestimate just how big they are -- the real state of our waistlines may be worse than it seems. But for the really frightening numbers, the CDC also includes data about what all this fat is doing to us. "In 2008," one bullet-point begins, "medical costs associated with obesity were estimated at $147 billion; the medical costs for people who are obese were $1,429 higher than those of normal weight." Maybe New York City's big cup ban isn't overzealous, after all.

Gawker, true to form, offers a reminder that even though this latest round of results shows a full third of the country suffering from a serious health crisis, the numbers are really "a guide to help you calculate your self-worth:"

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention should spend less time making maps, because we are all obese and they are doing a terrible job of controlling and preventing that.

While no state is slim or worthy of love, the least obese is Colorado, where a little more than one fifth of the population (20.7%) is believed to be obese. Other snobby states who think they're too good to be obese include Hawaii (21.8%) and Massachusetts (22.7%).

California, New Jersey, Arizona, Connecticut, Nevada, New York, Utah, and Wyoming, also had obesity rates of 25% or under. Montana's on that list too because Montana has a freaking eating disorder and I know we're not supposed to talk about it but there. Now we said it.


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Shaun Mason
Shaun Mason

Getting a jump on this year's State Fair coverage, are we?

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