In America’s inexorable march toward becoming a nation of overweight, over-stimulated, inactive, sallow-skinned diabetics, Louisiana continues to be a pace setter.

A new report issued jointly by the Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation on Thursday shows the Pelican State at No. 5 with an adult obesity rate of 31.6 percent. Viewed another way, almost one-third of Louisiana adults is considered obese. The list is topped by (Thank God For) Mississippi, where 34.4 percent of adults are dangerously corpulent, followed by Alabama (32.3), West Virginia (32.2) and Tennessee (31.9).

Most alarming in the report is the overall obesity rate’s rapid expansion overall in these United States. A dozen states eclipsed the 30-percent obesity rate for adults. Five years ago Mississippi was the only state in the union with an adult obesity rate over 30 percent. What’s more, the leanest state in this week’s report — Colorado, with a rate of 19.8 percent — would have been the most obese state in America if it registered the same percentage in 1995.

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