Overview

Excess weight, especially obesity, is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, some musculoskeletal conditions and some cancers. As the level of excess weight increases, so does the risk of developing these conditions. In addition, being overweight can hamper the ability to control or manage chronic conditions.

More reports and statistics on overweight & obesity can be found under Food & nutrition and Physical activity.

Latest findings

60% of men and 66% of women in 2017–18 had a waist circumference that indicated a high risk of metabolic complications Overweight and obesity in Australian children and adolescents has stayed relatively stable since 2007–08 (25%) 38% of Indigenous children and adolescents were overweight or obese in 2018–19, increasing from 31% in 2012–13 The prevalence of obesity among people born in 1973–1982 increased from 6.5% at age 13–22 to 31% at age 35–44 In 2017–18, 38% of adults in the lowest socioeconomic areas were obese, compared with 24% in the highest Australia had the 6th highest proportion of overweight or obese people aged 15+ among 22 OECD member countries in 2019 For people born in 1963–1972, the median BMI increased from 24.4 kg/m2 at age 23–32 to 28.1 kg/m2 at age 45–54 Young people aged 15–24 in 2017–18 were more likely to be overweight or obese than those in 1995 and 2007–08 Younger children more commonly change weight categories (to or from overweight or obese) than older children For every age group, the median BMI of those born most recently was higher than that of those born 10 years earlier Children and adolescents living in areas of higher disadvantage are more likely to be overweight or obese 2 in 3 (67%) adults were overweight or obese in 2017–18—36% were overweight but not obese and 31% were obese One in four (25%) children and adolescents aged 2–17 were overweight or obese in 2017–18 25% of Australian children and adolescents were overweight or obese in 2017–18 For most age groups, those born most recently were more likely to be obese than those born 10 years earlier

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