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. Americans' midsection a weighty issue

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by Staff Writers
Princeton, N.J. (UPI) Nov 26, 2008
Six-in-10 Americans say they want to lose weight but a Gallup Poll released Wednesday indicates only 30 percent really try to do so.

While the number of people saying they want to shed a few pounds -- 59 percent -- is unchanged from 2001, Americans report carrying an average of 6 pounds more than they did seven years ago -- 177 now versus 171, Gallup reported.

On average, women report weighing 160 pounds, up from 153 in 2001, while men report weighing 194 pounds, up from 189, the Princeton, N.J., polling agency said.

The desire to lose weight is more prevalent among middle-aged Americans, of whom two-thirds say they would like to lose weight, the poll said. Middle-aged adults are about twice as likely as those ages 18 to 29 to say they are making a concerted effort to lose weight.

Overall, 30 percent of Americans say they are seriously trying to lose weight, up from the 28 percent pledging the same during each of the last two years, Gallup said.

Results are based on nationwide telephone interviews Nov. 13-16 with 1,009 adults. The margin of sampling error is 3 percentage points.

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