Agricultural Economics Department


Date of this Version



Cornhusker Economics, August 8, 2021


Copyright 2021 University of Nebraska.


Does your weight status—whether your height and weight put you into the normal weight, overweight, or obese category—predict your food choices, or even the types of food you’ll pay attention to when making a choice? What about the weight status you perceive yourself to be? These are important questions because the percentage of the population that is overweight or obese in the U.S.—and world-
wide—has been increasing for decades despite a wide range of efforts aimed at slowing/reversing its growth. In the U.S., over 70 percent of the population is overweight or obese. High body weight has numerous consequences for
individuals and society, placing the individual at greater risk for a variety of serious health issues, increasing direct and indirect healthcare costs, and decreasing economic productivity by causing workers to miss more days of work due to illness and be less productive even when present at work.