Health by the Numbers: Dieting

More than half of adults said they dieted in 2010. Despite this, obesity continues to be a personal problem and growing public health crisis. Adults and children consume too many calories and do not engage in nearly enough physical activity. Being overweight or obese leads to serious medical illnesses, such as cardiovascular heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.

Here's a look at a few dieting statistics:

  • 54: Percent of adults who dieted in 2010 (up from 33 percent in 2004).
  • 31: Studies analyzed, which found that most people who diet will regain all the weight back (sometimes more) within four or five years.
  • 18.5 to 24.9: Range for health BMI (body mass index), the ratio of weight to height.
  • 3500: Number of calories in one pound.
  • 72: Percent of men who are overweight or obese (64 percent of women).
  • 600: Average daily calorie increase from 1970 to 2008.
  • 9: Calories per gram of fat (4 each for carbohydrates and protein).
  • 10 to 12: Teaspoons of sugar in one can of sugar.
  • 64: Number of calories per day children must eliminate to reduce the obesity rate to 14.6 from 16.9 percent by 2020.
  • 187: Million of adults who use low-calorie, sugar-free foods and beverages.
  • 500 to 1000: Daily calorie reduction need to lose 1 to 2 pounds per week.




Centers for Disease Control. "Assessing Your Weight." Web. 17 August 2011.

Centers for Disease Control. "Losing Weight." Web. 17 August 2011.

National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. "What Are Overweight and Obesity?" Web.

U.S. Department of Agriculture. " Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010." Web. December 2010. "Be Active Your Way A Guide for Adults." Web. October 2008

Preidt, Robert. " Young Americans Need to Cut Calorie Intake: Study." Medline Plus. Web. 10 April 2012.

Smith, Melinda, M.A., Paul, Maya W., and Barston, Suzanne. "Healthy Weight Loss & Dieting Tips." Web. April 2012.

Calorie Control Council. "Trends and Statistics." Web. "Dieting Does Not Work, Researchers Report." Web. 4 April 2007.