Study spots difference in obesity rate between men and women

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A new report finds when it comes to obesity, men and women are not created equal.

"It's really important to monitor trends in obesity and extreme obesity in the United States because obesity has an impact on our health," says Dr. Cynthia Ogden from the National Center for Health Statistics. 

Obesity is closely linked to several health problems including diabetes, hypertension and heart disease, so doctors decided to look at trends in adults from 2005 - 2014.

"We were able to measure weight and height which are used to calculate BMI," Dr. Ogden explains. "Obesity is actually a BMI at or above 30. Class 3 obesity is a BMI above 40 and that's also sometimes called extreme obesity."

For this study, which is found in the Journal of the American Medical Association, they looked at trends over the decade, and they looked at a nationally representative sample of more than 13,000 men and 13,000 women.

"We saw that there had been no change in men in either obesity or extreme obesity, but there had been an increase in women in both obesity and extreme obesity," Dr. Ogden says. "When we adjusted for potential contributors of obesity by age, race, Hispanic origin, education and smoking status - that didn't change the results."

They also examined data from a few thousand men and a few thousand woman from 2013-2014.

"The prevalence of obesity among men was about 35 percent and among women was about 40 percent, and the prevalence of extreme obesity was 5 and a half percent in men and almost 10 percent in women."

Now that this difference in obesity rate between men and women has been spotted, the next study will look at "why."