UCLA Study Finds Rising Levels of Obesity, Diabetes in California
Nearly 60% of California adults are overweight or obese and almost 8% of adult residents have diabetes, according to a recent report by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research, HealthLeaders Media reports.
The report estimated that 9.3 million California adults are overweight and an additional 6 million are obese (Clark, HealthLeaders Media, 9/1). It alsoÂ found that more than 2 million adult residents have diabetes.
Researchers noted that the prevalence of both conditions has increased over time. They found that between 2001 and 2007:
- Adult obesity rates rose from 19.3% to 22.7%; and
- Adult diabetes rates increased from 6.2% to 7.8%.
Disparities Among Population Groups
Although obesity rates increased significantly among all ethnic groups, the rates remained highest among American Indian, black and Hispanic residents.
In addition, the report found that nearly 28% of California adults with annual incomes below the poverty level are obese, compared with 20% of those with higher annual incomes.
California adults who lacked a high school education were two times more likely be obese and three times more likely to have diabetes than their counterparts with college degrees, according to the report (Lin, "California Watch Blog," 9/1).
Counties in the San Joaquin Valley had some of the highest rates for obesity and diabetes. In 2007, about 34% of the region's residents were obese and 9.4% had diabetes.
The San Francisco Bay Area had some of the lowest rates for both conditions, with a regional obesity rate of 18.8%Â and a regional diabetes rate of 6.8% (Carlson, Modesto Bee, 9/2).
Efforts To Curb Obesity, Diabetes Rates
Although someÂ stakeholders have undertaken efforts to reduce diabetes and obesity rates in California, researchers said more time would be necessary to gauge the success of such initiatives (Anderson, Fresno Bee, 8/30).
Researchers also said that preventive efforts could include more opportunities for physical activity and improved nutrition in low-income areas (HealthLeaders Media, 9/1).This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.