Obesity Survey: Americans Need to Do Their Part

For years, health experts have been warning Americans about the growing obesity epidemic. Americans and people around the world are eating more and exercising less, and food companies are not as concerned about health as many think they should be. Some experts say that the government should enforce higher health standards, but do Americans support that idea?


The Problem

The CDC estimates that about one third of American adults and about 17% of children and adolescents are obese. In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 53% of respondents said that obesity is one of the most important issues facing Americans today, and 38.5% said that it is a pretty important issue. Only 4.8% said that it is the most important issue for Americans, but even fewer, 3.8% said that it isn’t an important issue at all.

The Solution

52.5% of respondents agreed with the experts, that the government should enforce higher health standards for agriculture and food companies. 30.8% were against any further government regulation, and 16.8% had no opinion.

So what precisely should be done about the obesity problem? 53% of respondents said that schools should have to provide healthier lunches and snacks for children. 25.8% said the government should place stricter health regulations on food companies. 12.8% said that government should tax unhealthy foods to encourage healthy eating. And the majority of respondents agreed that, regardless of any government intervention, individuals should play their part by being aware of their own health and taking care of themselves.

Doing Your Part

So how many of respondents are taking their own advice and taking care of their health? 55.8% of respondents described their diets as somewhat healthy, but only 10.3% described their diets as very healthy. 28.5% said their diet is not very healthy, and 5.5% said their diet is not healthy at all.

Obesity leads to some of the most deadly diseases in the world, yet Americans continue to gain weight at an alarming rate. Most people agree that it’s up to individuals to do their part, but that system doesn’t seem to be working. At what point does the government need to step in?

Photo Credit: Obesity in the US from Flickr

Anne Pilon brings 3 years experience to AYTM as a blogger and journalist. She has a degree in journalism and marketing communications from Columbia College in Chicago and enjoys writing about business, marketing, social media, and art.