The 2014 results for nationwide adult obesity rates were recently released by the State of Obesity non-profit organization, and Georgia came in at 19th in the country with a rate of 30.5%, slightly higher than in 2013. Georgia and the states surrounding it on the list, nearly all in the South, have seen obesity rates rise dramatically in the past 20 years – Georgia’s rate in 1990 was only about 10%, and just over 20% in 2000.
Reasons for this rise are many-fold, ranging from unhealthy food for children in schools and lack of physical activity throughout the day to food deserts, a particularly notable problem in Georgia where nearly 2 million residents live over a mile from a source of fresh produce and other healthy food options. A lack of access to grocery stores leads to a diet comprised mainly of fast food and gas station purchases, which as many a college student can tell you results in a less than healthy lifestyle.
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