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HEALTH7 Obesity: Percentage of children ages 6–17 with obesitya by age, race and Hispanic origin, and gender, selected years 1976–1980 through 2015–2018

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Characteristic 1976–1980 1988–1994 1999–2002 2003–2006 2007–2010 2011–2014 2015–2018
Ages 6–17
Total 5.7 11.2 16.0 17.3 18.6 19.5 20.0
Race and Hispanic originb
White, non-Hispanic 4.9 10.5 13.2 15.5 16.0 17.1 15.4
Black, non-Hispanic 8.2 14.0 20.7 21.5 24.0 22.5 25.9
Asian, non-Hispanic 9.8 11.4
Hispanic 23.7 24.3 23.5
Mexican American 15.4 23.0 22.7 23.8 25.2 29.6
Gender
Male 5.5 11.8 17.2 18.1 20.4 18.9 21.3
Female 5.8 10.6 14.7 16.3 16.7 20.0 18.7
Ages 6–11
Total 6.5 11.3 15.8 17.0 18.8 17.5 19.3
Gender
Male 6.7 11.6 16.9 18.0 20.7 17.6 20.9
Female 6.4 11.0 14.7 15.8 16.9 17.5 17.7
Ages 12–17
Total 4.9 11.1 16.1 17.5 18.4 21.3 20.7
Gender
Male 4.5 12.0 17.5 18.2 20.1 20.1 21.7
Female 5.4 10.2 14.7 16.8 16.6 22.5 19.6
— Not available.
a Obesity for children and adolescents is defined as body mass index (BMI) at or above the sex- and age-specific 95th percentile from the 2000 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Growth Charts (https://www.cdc.gov/growthcharts/). BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight. It is calculated as a person's weight in kilograms divided by the square of height in meters.
b From 1976 to 1994, the 1977 U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) standards for data on race and ethnicity were used to classify persons into one of the following four racial groups: White, Black, American Indian or Alaskan Native, or Asian or Pacific Islander. For 1999–2018, the revised 1997 OMB standards were used. Persons could select one or more of five racial groups: White, Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, and Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander. Included in the total but not shown separately are American Indian or Alaska Native, Asian, Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander, and "Two or more races." Beginning in 1999, those in each racial category represent those reporting only one race. Data from 1999 onward are not directly comparable with data from earlier years. Data on race and Hispanic origin are collected separately but combined for reporting. Persons of Mexican origin may be of any race. From 1976 to 2006, the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) sample was designed to provide estimates specifically for persons of Mexican origin. Beginning in 2007, NHANES allows for reporting of both total Hispanics and Mexican Americans. Beginning 2009–2012, the NHANES sample was designed to provide estimates for Asian Americans.
SOURCE: National Center for Health Statistics, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.