Half of Americans want to lose weight, but only 26% are trying. Percentage wanting to lose weight remains at a low of 51%.
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Despite the increasing focus on the negative consequences of obesity, the percentage of Americans who would like to lose weight has gone down, not up, since the early 2000s, while the percentage saying they are making a serious effort to lose it has been consistent. The margin between those who want to lose weight and those who are trying has shrunk an additional point from last year, reaching its smallest yet of 25 percentage points.
These results are from Gallup's Health and Healthcare survey, conducted Nov. 6-9. Gallup has asked American adults about their weight and their attitudes toward it since 1990, and on a yearly basis since 2002.
Desire to lose weight was relatively consistent between 2002 and 2008, at about the 60% level -- peaking at 62% in 2004. But this desire has flagged in recent years, down to its lowest level of 51% in the past two years. The percentage of Americans who would like to stay at their present weight has varied even less, ranging from 32% to 41% since 1990. The current reading of 40% is one of the highest percentages of Americans who are happy with their weight since 1996. (SOURCE: Gallup.com)
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