The Cost of Obesity and Being Overweight

With approximately 60 percent of the United States population overweight, it is expected that by 2030 about 50 percent of the total population will be overweight or obese. Through studies, scientists have learned that being overweight or obese is more costly than being of a normal weight. Not only does being obese or overweight impact the individual, but also employers, other employees, and the government.

Being obese or overweight has many costs. Health care, insurance, and disability insurance are a few costs that the employer has to pick up, putting a burden on them which can result in lower wages for employees. The government also pays for health care programs such as Medicare and Medicaid. Being obese is far more expensive than being just overweight. With a total breakdown of costs, the additional medical expenses for obese women is $8,365 per year, and for an obese man it is $6,518 per year.

When either obese or overweight, costs come from many different areas. How overweight or obese someone is determines where he shops, what kind of vehicle he drives, health care costs, fuel cost, air travel, and furniture size. While the cost of being overweight may not be as dramatic as the cost of obesity, there is still an increase in the cost of life with being obese or overweight.