Obesity Rates for Youth Ages 10 to 17
Roughly one in six youth have obesity, according to the newest available data. The data, from the National Survey of Children’s Health, show that in 2019-2020, 16.2 percent of youth ages 10 to 17 had obesity. That rate has held steady for the last five years.
Disparities by race and ethnicity persist. In 2019-2020, non-Hispanic Asian children had the lowest obesity rate (8.1%) followed by non-Hispanic White children (12.1%). Obesity rates were significantly higher for non-Hispanic Black (23.8%), Hispanic (21.4%), and non-Hispanic American Indian/Alaska Native (28.7%) children.
There were also significant differences based on household income. In 2019-2020, obesity rates ranged from 8.6% among youth in the highest income group to 23.1% among youth in the lowest income group.
Six states had youth obesity rates significantly higher than the national rate (16.2%): Kentucky (23.8%), Mississippi (22.3%), Louisiana (22.2%), West Virginia (21.9%), Alabama (21.8%), and Tennessee (20.8%).
Eleven states had youth obesity rates significantly lower than the national rate (16.2%): Montana (10%), Arizona (10.2%), Utah (10.3%), North Dakota (10.5%), Wyoming (11.0%), Colorado (11.2%), New York (11.5%), Kansas (11.7%), Minnesota (11.7%), Massachusetts (12.2%), and Nebraska (12.6%).
Disparities by race, ethnicity, and income level persist
Of non-Hispanic American Indian/Alaska Native youth have obesity, the highest of any of the five racial and ethnic groups studied.
Of youth from families in the lowest-income group have obesity, compared to 8.1% of those in families from the highest-income group.
States have obesity rates significantly higher than the national rate.
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This data set offers state-by-state youth obesity rates tracked over time since 2016.About the Data
Obesity Rate, Youth Ages 10-17,
Obesity rates, children ages 10 to 17
Source: The National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH) collects information on the health of children in the United States who are 0-17 years old. Parents or caregivers are asked to report their child’s height and weight, which can be used to calculate body-mass index (BMI) for children 10-17 years. The Health Resources and Services Administration’s Maternal and Child Health Bureau (HRSA MCHB) funds and directs the NSCH and develops survey content in collaboration with a national technical expert panel and the U.S. Census Bureau, which then conducts the survey on behalf of HRSA MCHB. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation worked with HRSA MCHB to disseminate the latest obesity data.
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