The Most Obese States in America

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More than one-third of U.S. adults were considered obese in 2021, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Defined as a body mass index of 30 or above, obesity places people at greater risk for a range of health issues, including heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and stroke.

As part of the 2023 Best States rankings, U.S. News gathered adult obesity rates for each state through the CDC. The metric is one of six that factor into a ranking of the best states for public health – which informs the best states for health care rankings and the overall Best States rankings – and shows that some states struggle with obesity more than others.

These are the 10 states with the highest adult obesity rates, according to the data. You can learn more about how states are assessed for the Best States rankings in our methodology.

10. Missouri

9. Ohio

8. Louisiana

7. South Dakota

6. Arkansas

5. Mississippi

4. Oklahoma

3. Kentucky

2. Alabama

1. West Virginia