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More than three-quarters of Americans projected to be overweight, obese by 2020

Unless Americans start dramatically changing their lifestyles to better manage their weight, new data projects that 83 percent of men and 72 percent of women will be overweight or obese by 2020. Shots reports:

The latest numbers come from Mark Huffman, an assistant professor of preventive medicine and cardiology at Northwestern University who presented them at the annual scientific meeting of the American Heart Association this week.

He looked at current rates for cardiovascular risk factors including smoking, lack of exercise, diet, weight, blood pressure and cholesterol. He found that reductions in smoking, high cholesterol and high blood pressure since 1988 have been offset by weight gain, diabetes, and pre-diabetes.

Then he took the increases in weight, diabetes, and prediabetes, and predicted where they would go in the next two decades. That's how he came up with more than three-quarters of Americans becoming overweight.

Further down in the article, Huffman urges public health officials to develop strategies aimed at both individuals and large groups to help Americans stay fit, such as better access to fresh fruits and vegetables and additional physical education classes in schools.

Previously: Behavioral therapy for weight loss may also benefit family members, Study finds family members of weight-loss-surgery patients also shed pounds, Stanford researchers, clinicians and academics gather for Obesity Summit 2, Study shows U.S. obesity rates will expand over next 40 years and Experts weigh in on the most effective approach to fighting obesity

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