Indiana ranked 10th fattest US state, report says

Indiana 10th fattest state (WISH Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Indiana is one of the fattest states in America, according to a new report released by 

But it isn’t all doom and gloom. There is hope and help to trim the state’s waistline.

Kelly Dodds is working on her own personal weight control journey.

“It’s a roller coaster ride sometimes, a little up and down. I know that exercise — that really helps a lot,” Dodds explained.

“It is unfortunate and it’s sad to hear those statistics. We have fluctuated, you know,  in the past few years, between seventh most obese and 15th,” said Lindsey Bouza, the director of the division of nutrition and physical activity for the Indiana State Department of Health.

The Indiana State Health Department said 32 percent of adult Hoosiers are obese, and 34 percent of adult Hoosiers are overweight.

The state said that as of 2016, 33 percent of children ages 10-17 were overweight or obese.

Bouza said one reason for the high ranking is because Indiana can’t compete with states with warm weather or with beaches or mountains for more outdoor activities.

It’s something she says Hoosiers have battled for years, but which people can overcome by doing things such as watching portion sizes.

“It is also replacing white bread with whole grain bread. That’s an example of something you can do. It doesn’t have to be hard. A lot of people say it’s too hard to eat healthy. You can use frozen vegetables. Those are just as good as fresh,” said Bouza.

Masie Duncan, a weight loss coordinator with the National Institute of Fitness and Sport, said change people should change their thinking, too.

“If you have a desk job, get up and move every now and then. Get up and walk around the office,” Duncan explained.

She encouraged people to do small things to spark a change in Indiana and shatter years-old habits.


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Bouza said the state also works with schools and child care providers on how to get kids to be more healthy during the school day, including the foods they eat or their exercise at recess.

Duncan said people can be more active when they’re at home, too.  For example, play with the kids, or find a way to make chores fun. All of the little changes will add up and help people want to do more.