Nearly 1 In 3 Young American Adults Is Ineligible For Military Due To Weight

Nearly 1 In 3 Young American Adults Is Ineligible For Military Due To Weight

The American obesity epidemic is hampering military recruiting, with 1 in 3 young adults nationwide too overweight to enlist.

The report focused on Kansas where 29% of teenagers are overweight, according to figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. About a third of American children and teens are considered obese or overweight.

Obesity is one of the leading causes of military ineligibility among young adults ages 17 to 24. Others are a lack of adequate education, a criminal history or drug use.

All those put together mean that 71% of Kansans are ineligible for military service.

The military has also seen a 61% rise in obesity since 2002 among its active duty forces, driving up obesity-related health care spending and costs to replace unfit military personnel.

A group of retired military leaders visited schools around the state promoting healthier lifestyles.

About 99% of the schools in Kansas have adopted healthier meals under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010, which requires more fruit, vegetables and whole grains in school meals, along with less sodium, sugar and fat.

 

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