AP poll finds aging boomers to be most obese generation

Baby boomers are setting themselves up for unhealthy—and costly—golden years, according to the new Associated Press LifeGoesStrong.com poll that found this generation to be more obese than any other.

Calculations of body mass index from self-reported height and weight in the poll show a third of baby boomers are obese, compared to about a quarter of other responders, while an additional 36 percent of boomers are merely overweight.

The findings show that only about a quarter of boomers work up a sweat at least four times a week for the recommended 2 ½ hours of weekly moderate-intensity aerobic exercise.

“Worse, 37 percent never do any of the strength training so crucial to fighting the muscle loss that comes with aging,” the Associated Press reported. Inactivity and muscle loss affect mobility later in life, often sneaking up on sedentary seniors.

The heightened risks of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and arthritis inherent to obesity mean aging boomers will put added stress on Medicare, which pays 34 percent more on an obese senior than a healthy one, the Associated Press reported.

Despite heart disease being America’s top killer, boomers are more worried about memory loss and dementia, and half of those polled do mental exercises as preventative measures. The poll, held from June 3-12, interviewed 1,416 adults—1,078 of whom were boomers.

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