3-9. Overweight and Obesity
Body mass index (BMI) is a measure of body fat based on the ratio of weight and height (bodyweight in kilograms divided by height in metres squared). The normal range of BMI for an adult is 18.5 to 24.9 kg/m2. 'Overweight' is defined by the World Health Organisation as a BMI in the range of 25 to less than 30. 'Obesity' is a BMI of 30 or higher.
For overweight and obesity rates in children, please refer to Chapter 2-11.
3-9-1. Overweight and Obesity in South Australia – by Local Health Network
- In 2015, nearly two-thirds (62.0%) of South Australians aged 18 years or more were either overweight or obese.
- The rate varies between the three metropolitan Adelaide Local Health Networks (LHNs) from 56.1% in the Central Adelaide LHN up to 64.2% in the Northern Adelaide LHN.
- The overweight/obesity rate among Country SA residents (66.5%) is statistically significantly higher than the metropolitan Adelaide rate (60.1%).
- Over the last decade the rates of overweight and obesity in both metropolitan Adelaide and Country SA have statistically significantly increased.
|Local Health Network||%|
|Northern Adelaide LHN||64.2%|
|Central Adelaide LHN||56.1%|
|Southern Adelaide LHN||61.2%|
|Country SA LHN||66.5%|
3-9-2. Overweight and Obesity in South Australia – by age and sex
- In 2015, the proportion of males aged 18 years and over who were overweight or obese (67.5%) was substantially higher than the corresponding female rate (56.7%).
3-9-3. Overweight and Obesity in South Australia – by socio-economic status
- There is a statistically significant inverse correlation between the proportion of people aged 18 years and over who are classified as overweight or obese and the socio-economic status of the area in which they live.
|Socio-economic status (SES)||%|
3-9-4. Overweight and Obesity in Australia – by state and territory
- The data below comes from the Australian Bureau of Statistics' 2014-15 National Health Survey. It is therefore not directly comparable to the 2015 information presented in 3-9-1 to 3-9-3 above which is sourced via the South Australian Monitoring and Surveillance System.
- However, the national survey does largely corroborate the state-specific survey, with 64.5% (age standardised) of South Australians aged 18 years and over reporting a BMI that classifies them as overweight or obese.
- Nationally, the South Australian overweight/obesity rate is slightly above the Australia-wide average of 62.8% (age standardised), and is ranked third-highest of the states and territories
|New South Wales||62.6%|
|Australian Capital Territory||63.5%|
3-9-5. Overweight and Obesity – Aboriginal people
- In 2012-13, 62.9% of Aboriginal people in South Australia aged 15 years and older had a BMI classified as overweight or obese.
- Although not strictly comparable, this is lower than the 64.5% overweight/obesity rate recorded for all South Australians aged 18 years or more in the ABS 2014-15 National Health Survey (see 3-9-4 above).
- South Australia's overweight/obesity rate among Aboriginal people is below the national average for Aboriginal people (65.6%).
|Australian Capital Territory||58.3%|
|New South Wales||70.6%|
- Based on Health Information Portal database 2016, 'Management Reporting, Reports, South Australian Monitoring and Surveillance System Online, Body Mass Index WHO definition (Age 18+)', SA Health, Adelaide, accessed 14 December 2016.
- Based on ABS 2015, 'Table 2.3 Summary health characteristics – States and territories, Proportion of persons', National Health Survey: First Results, 2014-15, cat. no. 4364.0.55.001, viewed 17 March 2016.
- Based on ABS 2013, 'Table 3.3 Selected health characteristics, by State/Territory – 2012-13, Proportion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons', Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey: First Results, 2012-13, cat no 4727.0.55.001, viewed 2 September 2015.