<a href="https:\/\/www.sandiegouniontribune.com\/news\/nation-world\/story\/2020-02-26\/about-40-of-us-adults-are-obese-government-survey-finds">Official study in the United States<\/a> revealed that about 4 in 10 American adults suffer obesity, and nearly 1 in 10 is severely so.\r\n\r\nThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention findings which were published this morning, come from a 2017-18 health survey that measures height and weight. More than 5,000 U.S. adults took part.\r\n\r\nAccording to the researchers, the obesity rate was 42% \u2014 higher than the 40% found in a similar 2015-16 study. "The severe obesity rate was more than 9% in the new survey, up from the 8% figure in the previous one," said the CDC's Cynthia Ogden, one of the report's authors.\r\n\r\nA half-century ago, about 1 in 100 American adults were severely <a href="https:\/\/see.news\/?s=obesity">obese<\/a>. Now it's 10 times more common.\r\nThe obesity rate has risen about 40% in the last two decades.\r\n\r\n"The findings suggest that more Americans will get diabetes, heart disease and cancer," said Dr. William Dietz, a George Washington University obesity expert.\r\n\r\n"It also will be increasingly difficult for doctors to care for so many severely obese people," he added.\r\n\r\n"The CDC did not report new obesity numbers for kids and teens. That may come out later this year," Ogden said. In 2015-16, 18.5% of kids and teens were obese and just under 6% were severely obese.\r\n\r\nIn specific, Dietz faulted the government for not pushing for more measures to promote physical activity and better eating. "Building more sidewalks and passing a national tax on sugary beverages could make a big difference," he said.\r\n\r\nObesity \u2014 which means not merely overweight, but seriously overweight \u2014 is considered one of the nation's leading public health problems.\r\n\r\nIt is measured by the body mass index, or BMI, a figure calculated from a person's weight and height. A BMI of 25 or greater is considered overweight, a BMI of 30 and above is obese, and a BMI of 40 or above is severely obese.\r\n\r\nA person who is 5-foot-4, the average height for U.S. women, is considered obese at a weight of 174 pounds and severely obese above 232 pounds. A person who is 5-foot-9, about the average height for men, is deemed obese at 203 pounds and severely obese at 270.