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The State of Obesity in

Tennessee

Tennessee has the 12th highest adult obesity rate in the nation, and the 20th highest obesity rate for youth ages 10 to 17. Tennessee's adult obesity rate is currently 34.4%, up from 20.9% in 2000 and from 11.1% in 1990. This state profile includes data on adult and childhood obesity, obesity-related health issues, and policy actions Tennessee is taking to prevent and reduce obesity. According to the most recent data, adult obesity rates are at least 35% in nine states, top 30% in 31 states, and 25% in 48 states. View adult obesity rates for all states.

Childhood Obesity in Tennessee New Data


2- to 4-year-old WIC participants

Current obesity rate (2014)

14.9%


Rank among states (2014)

19/51


Source: stateofobesity.org/wic

10- to 17-year-olds

Current obesity rate (2017-2018)

16.7%


Rank among states (2017-2018)

12/51


Source: stateofobesity.org/children1017

High school students

Current obesity rate (2017)

20.5%


Rank among states (2017)

2/43


Source: stateofobesity.org/high-school-obesity


Childhood Obesity Stories: Tennessee

Declining Obesity Among 2- to 4-year-olds: In Tennessee, obesity rates declined among 2- to 4-year-olds enrolled in WIC from 2010 to 2014. The rate of obesity dropped from 16.0% to 14.9%.

Read More

Tennessee Tennessee reported a decline in obesity among students in grades K, 2, 4, 6, 8, and high school from 2007-08 to 2012-13.

Read More

Adult Obesity in Tennessee New Data


Obesity Rate (2018)

34.4%

Rank Among States (2018)

12/51

Obesity rate by age (2018)

18-25 25.2% 26-44 33.8% 45-64 40.5% 65+ 30.7%

Obesity rate by race (2018)

White 32.3% Black 44.7% Latino 33.6%

Obesity rate by gender (2018)

Men 33.5% Women 35.3%
Note: A change in methodology makes direct comparisons to data collected prior to 2011 difficult. Read the full rates and ranks methodology for more information. Source: Trust for America's Health. The State of Obesity: Better Policies for a Healthier America, 2019. Washington, D.C.: 2019.

Obesity-Related Health Issues in Tennessee New Data


Diabetes:

Current adult diabetes rate (2018)

13.9%


Rank among states (2018)

6/51


Diabetes cases in 2010

594,871


Projected cases of diabetes in 2030 at current pace

939,564


Historical adult diabetes rates (1990-2017)

Hypertension:

Current adult hypertension rate (2017)

38.7%


Rank among states (2017)

7/51


Hypertension cases in 2010

1,299,689


Projected cases of hypertension in 2030 at current pace

1,714,690


Historical adult hypertension rates (1990-2015)

Heart Disease:

Heart disease cases in 2010

396,752


Projected cases of heart disease in 2030

1,896,993


Arthritis:

Arthritis cases in 2010

1,289,571


Projected cases of arthritis in 2030

1,117,321


Obesity-Related Cancer:

Obesity-related cancer cases in 2010

101,301


Projected cases of cancer in 2030

260,360


Sources: Current diabetes (2018) and hypertension (2017) rates are from The State of Obesity 2019; 2010 diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, arthritis and obesity-related cancer numbers and projected cases of obesity-related health problems related are from F as in Fat 2012.

State Policies to Prevent Obesity

Early Childhood U.S. Tennessee

Breastfeeding

State has regulations requiring licensed ECE programs to allow or encourage onsite breastfeeding

22 + D.C. View all states

Defined Physical Activity

State has set a definition for physical activity in ECE settings

9 + D.C. View all states

Drinking Water

State has regulations requiring licensed ECE programs to make drinking water available to children

43 View all states

Healthy Eating

State has regulations requiring licensed ECE programs to have healthy eating policies

50 + D.C. View all states

Link to CACFP Updates

State has licensing laws linked to the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) standards that automatically update

23 + D.C. View all states

Nutrition Standards

State has regulations requiring licensed ECE programs to provide meals and snacks that meet dietary guidelines

26 + D.C. View all states

Physical Activity

State has regulations requiring licensed ECE programs to have time for daily physical activity

50 + D.C. View all states

Private Breastfeeding Space

State has regulations requiring licensed ECE programs to have a private space available for mothers to breastfeed infants

4 + D.C. View all states

Screen Time

State sets limits for screen time in ECE settings, or has regulations requiring ECE centers to set limits.

29 + D.C. View all states
Schools U.S. Tennessee

Elementary School Physical Education

State requires elementary school students to participate in physical education

38 + D.C. View all states

High School Physical Education

State requires high school students to participate in physical education

42 + D.C. View all states

Middle School Physical Education

State requires middle school students to participate in physical education

36 + D.C. View all states

PE Time Requirement, Elementary Schools

State requires elementary school students to participate in a minimum amount of time of physical education

18 + D.C. View all states

PE Time Requirement, High Schools

State requires high school students to participate in a minimum amount of time of physical education

6 View all states

PE Time Requirement, Middle Schools

State requires middle school students to participate in a minimum amount of time of physical education

14 + D.C. View all states

Recess

State requires recess in elementary schools

5 View all states

Safe Routes to Schools

State has statutes or regulations on Safe Routes to School

16 View all states

Shared Use of Facilities

State has policy for communities to access school recreational facilities outside school hours.

36 + D.C. View all states

Community Eligibility Provision

Percentage of eligible schools in the state adopting the community eligibility provision

77.3% View all states

Farm-to-School Programs

Percentage of school districts in the state participating in farm-to-school activities

51% View all states

School Nutrition Standards

Percentage of school food authorities in state meeting updated meal nutrition standards

99.9% View all states
Community U.S. Tennessee

Complete Streets

State has adopted a complete streets policy

33 + D.C. View all states

Healthy Food Financing Initiatives

State has healthy food financing funding

37 + D.C. View all states

Preemption

State has laws preempting local policies related to nutrition

9 View all states

Child Food Insecurity Rate

Percentage of children in state that are food insecure

21.1% View all states

Overall Food Insecurity Rate

Percentage of the state population that is food insecure

15.4% View all states

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

Percentage of state residents participating in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

17.0% View all states