In 31 US states, more than one in four adults are obese, says a new report from the Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Obesity rates among adults rose in 23 states over the past year, and no state experienced a significant decline.
"While the nation has long been bracing for a surge in Medicare as the boomers start turning 65, the new report makes clear that fat, not just age, will fuel much of those bills," according to the Associated Press. "Health economists once made the harsh financial calculation that the obese would save money because they [were thought to die] sooner. But more recent research instead suggests that better treatments are keeping them alive nearly as long — but they’re much sicker for longer, requiring such costly interventions as knee replacements and diabetes care and dialysis. Medicare spends anywhere from $1,400 to $6,000 more annually on health care for an obese senior than for the non-obese."