On the surface level there is not much to know about weight loss statistics: exercise more and consume fewer calories and you will see drastic changes. However, experienced dieters know that the process is much more difficult. Some of the most recent studies have found that the majority of the world is trying to lose weight and get fit, even though many do not know how to do this successfully. 

Unfortunately, many people jump into dieting without knowing the real weight loss facts.  Here are the best statistics and facts on weight loss you need to know to jumpstart your own fitness journey.

Top 10 Key Stats and Facts on Weight Loss

  • There are over 1 billion overweight adults in the world, and the number is growing by the minute.
  • 56.4% of women and 41.7% of men in the United States attempted to lose weight.
  • Home Workout – No Equipment is the most downloaded health and weight loss app in the world, weight loss stats for 2020 reveal.
  • The global weight management market will be worth $292.2 billion in 2024.
  • $33 billion is spent on weight loss products each year in the US.
  • Adult obesity rates in the United States exceed 35% in nine states, 30% in 31 states and 25% in 48 states.
  • On average, a woman needs around 1,500 calories a day to lose weight, while men need 2,000 calories.
  •  28.5% of elderly adults in the United States were obese in 2019.
  • CBD oil for weight loss is great because it reduces appetite and increases fat burning.
  • Only 15% of cannabis users struggle with losing weight compared to 20% of non-users.

Weight Loss Statistics for the United States

Weight Loss Statistics - USA

1. More than 32% of adults over 20 in the United States were obese as of 2018.


With the rise of major fast-food restaurants and the fast-paced life, the obesity rates in the United States have significantly increased over the years. Obesity is linked with many diseases such as stroke, type 1 and type 2 diabetes and various types of cancer.

2. 32% of black adults in the United States live a sedentary lifestyle.


According to the fairly recent statistics on weight loss, the prevalence of lack of exercise and a sedentary lifestyle was the highest among black adults, and the lowest among Asians (20%).

3. 34.4% of adults in Kentucky report not getting extra physical activity or exercise outside of work.


Statistics on the lack of exercise in the states in America displays Kentucky as the one with the highest rates of physical inactivity in 2018. In contrast, the lowest rates belong to Colorado — only 19%.

4. Weight loss stats confirm 60% of the surveyed female high school students reported trying to lose weight.


The statistics on weight management among high school students in grades 9 to 12 during 2017 show numbers regarding ethnicity and gender. Overall, Hispanics seemed to have the desire to lose weight the most, regardless of gender.

5. 28.5% of elderly adults in the United States were obese in 2019.


The many complications that come with obesity get more and more dangerous with age. The weight loss statistics looked into the percentage of American seniors above 65 years from 2013-2019. It was found that an estimated 28.5% of the elderly were obese in 2019, in comparison with 25.3% in the previous years. 

Some weight loss benefits among the elderly include a reduced chance of developing depression and Alzheimer’s disease.

6. Adult obesity rates in the United States exceed 35% in nine states, 30% in 31 states and 25% in 48 states, weight loss statistics for 2019 report.

(State of Obesity)

The increasing obesity rates to be the most prevalent in Mississippi and West Virginia at 39.5%, whilst Colorado displayed the lowest rates at 23%. 

The latest information in 2019 reported by the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System data found that adult obesity rates are still on the rise in all of the states.

7. Around 147 billion dollars were spent on annual medical costs due to obesity in the United States.


It is quite shocking how much damage being overweight or obese has on not only the individual’s overall health but the economy of the country. 

Judging by the weight loss industry facts, it was estimated that in the year 1997, Medicare and Medicaid financed more than half of the medical costs of obesity, which totaled 75.5 billion dollars. Unfortunately, the numbers increased by 2008 to an insane 147 billion dollars.

8. Around 49.1% of Hispanic adults in the United States attempted to lose weight.


The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey also found some interesting facts about weight loss concerning weight loss and ethnic groups in the United States. 

According to the numbers, 41.4% of non-Hispanic Asian adults, 49.4% of non-Hispanic whites and 49.1% of Hispanic adults attempted to lose weight and get fit.

9. 53.7% of adult Americans with higher family income and 48.7% of adults with middle family income attempted to lose weight.


The weight loss industry statistics from 2017 found the following: in general, 53.7% of adults with higher family income (more than 350% of the federal poverty level) and 48.7% adults with middle family income attempted to lose extra weight. Also, 52.9% of adults with lower family income tried the same techniques.

10. Stats show that 56.4% of women and 41.7% of men in the United States attempted to lose weight.


The healthy weight loss research which looked into the percentage of adults trying to lose weight between 2013-2016 by gender found that women were more likely to go on diets and start exercising than their male counterparts. 

This tendency might be explained by the influence of social media and celebrity fad diets.

11. How much money is spent on weight loss products each year in the US? $33 billion.

(Boston Medical Center)

In total, $33 billion are spent on various weight loss products each year. Despite this huge spending, about two-thirds of US citizens are still obese, or overweight, which makes one doubt their efficiency. 

As the weight loss market is worth some $72 billion, we see that weight loss products do contribute to the market size. The number of dieters is said to have decreased due to body positivity movements, but still a lot of money is spent on weight loss pills and teas. 

Global Weight Loss Statistics 

Weight Loss Statistics - Globally

12. There are over 1 billion overweight adults in the world, and the number is growing by the minute.


Unfortunately, even though the citizens of the United States are stereotypically called fat, more and more people from all around the world are joining the obesity epidemic. 

13. Japan is the country with the lowest rate of obesity among OECD countries — weight loss statistics show its rate is 3.7%.

(Rakuten Today)

Famously known as the land of one of the healthiest people in the world, Japan can say that they have the highest life expectancy (83.7 years) and the lowest rate of obesity (3.7%). 

The research found that Japan’s excellent healthcare, respect for the elderly, and their praiseworthy attitude towards food contribute to the longevity and wellbeing of the people.

14. Around 40% of South African citizens suffer from a lack of exercise.


The weight loss statistics from 2018 rely on a recent study conducted by the WHO. The researchers looked into the physical activity rates and fatal disease rates of men and women around the globe. 

They found that more than 1.4 billion people do not get enough daily exercise, which also included 38.2% of South Africans. 

In addition, 47.3% of women in South Africa compared to 28.5% of men in the country do not get enough physical activity.

15. Do Europeans get enough exercise? 49.8% of the adult EU population does not take part in any form of sport.


However, among those who do exercise, the exercise and weight loss statistics found Finland to be at the top spot, with 54.1% of the population getting at least two and a half hours of weekly exercise. 

On the other side, Romania and Bulgaria were shown to have the lowest proportions of active citizens (7.5% and 9%).

16. Senior Austrians are the most active ones with 30.9% of the population exercising five hours per week.


Even though it is natural that time spent on daily physical activity declines as people age, Austria has proven otherwise. The long term weight loss statistics found that Austrian seniors over 65 are among the most active in the European Union with around 30.9% of them doing at least five hours of moderate to vigorous exercise weekly.

17. More than 50% of Australians aren’t active enough.


Unfortunately, statistics have shown that the Land Down Under is generally not a country of active people. 

Furthermore, the weight loss industry stats concerning pregnant women show that only 3 in 10 women successfully meet the Australian physical activity guidelines. Keeping active during all 9 months of pregnancy is important not only for a healthy future mom but also for the developing baby.

18. The global weight management market will be worth $292.2 billion in 2024.


The worldwide weight loss market was worth $189.8 billion in 2018. That means there a CAGR of around 6% is expected in the period 2019-2024.

19. Home Workout – No Equipment is the most downloaded health and weight loss app in the world, weight loss statistics for 2020 reveal.


This is the most downloaded android mobile application in the world. Home Workout – No Equipment was downloaded 2.6 million times by March 2020.

The second in line is a health app, and quite expected — Coronavirus SUS, with 2.17 million downloads.

Diet Success Statistics and Tips

Weight Loss Statistics - Methods

20. On average, a woman needs around 1,500 calories a day to lose weight, while men need 2,000 calories.


There are many weight loss myths that need to be debunked, one of which is the recommended calorie intake for weight loss

To lose weight, an individual needs to eat fewer calories than the body burns every day. Of course, 1,500 and 2,000 calories are just estimated numbers, so remember to consult with a doctor and find out what works for you and your needs.

21. Water and weight loss facts confirm water suppresses appetite and helps weight loss.


The human body is made up of approximately 60% of water, whilst the majority of the water percentage (90%) is in the blood. Even though there is no universally agreed quantity of water experts recommend consuming daily, studies have shown that humans should aim to drink at least nine glasses of the beverage daily.

22. Only 33% of adults in the US are meeting the recommended amount of daily fruit consumption.


Fruits are one of the best foods to lose weight; whether they are apples, oranges or bananas, fruits are extremely high in vitamins and nutrients essential for proper bodily functions.

Also, a diet based on whole fruits is a great way to lose weight and feel energized. For instance, healthy аdults should aim to include more vitamin C rich fruits into the diet, because grapefruit and weight loss facts show that the two are linked.

23. Less than 27% of adults in the United States are meeting the recommended amount of daily vegetable consumption.


All vegetables are extremely important for healthy weight loss, as they are full of vitamins, minerals and very few calories. Clever weight loss fun facts include making veggie smoothies with berries to mask the plain taste of cucumbers or celery!

24. 40% of gym members enroll in group exercises like Zumba or spinning.


Daily exercise and a well-balanced diet go hand in hand with each other, and one of the favorite places to go break a sweat in the gym. In fact, gyms in the United States have shown significant growth during the last decade, proving that gym-goers are on the rise. 

Zumba weight loss statistics found that Zumba, in particular, is an excellent way to get the blood pumping and burning an insane amount of extra calories!

25. WHO recommends that the total fat intake must not go over 30% of the total energy intake if you are to avoid becoming overweight.


This goes for saturated and unsaturated fats.

In order to be healthy, one should eat at least 400g of fruit and vegetables (starchy foods such as potatoes are not included here). Salt intake should be kept under 5g per day (that’s one teaspoon).

Marijuana for Weight Loss

Weight Loss Statistics - Cannabis

26. Ingesting cannabis strains before sleep reduces the amount of REM sleep and reduces nightmares.


Sleep and weight loss facts have shown that individuals need to get enough quality sleep

Studies have shown that when dieters sleep less over a 14-day period, the amount of weight they lose from excess fat drops by a whopping 55%. Thus, to keep losing weight and remain healthy, sleep well..

27. Americans who take cannabis before the gym exercise 43 minutes longer than those who don’t.


The latest weight loss statistics in America dealing with cannabis users and exercise found that these individuals are generally more motivated to perform physical activity and they tend to recover faster than those who do not use cannabis around their workouts. 

The survey analyzed 600 cannabis users and exercise statistics showed that those individuals who used the drug an hour before hitting the gym reported getting in 43 more minutes of exercise every week. Yoga and cannabis classes are also becoming popular.

28. CBD oil for weight loss is great because it reduces appetite and increases fat burning.

(MedicalNewsToday) (StrainPrint)

Looking at weight loss industry statistics from 2015 concerning cannabis, researchers looked into whether there is a link between CBD oil and weight loss. Interestingly, it was found that CBD does not increase appetite, whilst THC in cannabis does. 

A study from 2016 came to the conclusion that CBD manages to interact with the body’s fat stores by successfully converting the cells into brown cells.

29. Only 15% of cannabis users struggle with losing weight compared to 20% of non-users.


Even though many associate cannabis consumption with having the munchies (increased appetite), recent evidence suggests that individuals who use the drug weigh significantly less than adults who do not use it. 

The weight loss success statistics by researchers who analyzed data from the National Epidemiologic Survey of Alcohol and Related Conditions found that the results contradict the stereotypical “cannabis will give you munchies” statement and that cannabis is beneficial for weight loss

The results were obtained by observing the BMI of around 33,000 adult participants. 

30. CBD oil reduces inflammation in the body and helps with mobility when working out.


Many weight loss facts and tips claim that individuals who want to lose weight need to work out daily. A 2018 review of 132 studies published in Frontiers in Neurology, found that cannabis is able to reduce inflammation in the body from working out and it also assists in mobility with individuals suffering from multiple sclerosis. 

Thus, CBD oil is not only beneficial for weight loss but also inflammation.


Weight Loss Statistics - FAQs

What percentage of dieters regain weight?


Experienced dieters know that losing excess weight and keeping it is more difficult than it sounds. 

Even though there are no exact numbers in the weight loss community, it is estimated that the percentage of individuals who lose weight and regain it shortly afterward ranges from 80% to 95%. This phenomenon may be explained by an unrealistic or restrictive diet and exercise programs.

The best weight loss technique you can do is to make small, realistic changes and build up the intensity as time goes by.

What is a healthy rate to lose weight?


Setting realistic goals that will challenge you in the long run is what you need to do to consistently lose excess fat and maintain the goal weight. Professionals recommend aiming for losing around 1 pound per week. 

How to lose weight in a week? In general, to lose this amount of fat weekly, an individual needs to burn around 500-1,000 calories more than he or she consumes throughout a day. This may be achieved by sticking to a low-calorie, high-protein diet and working out daily.

What percentage of dieters maintain long term weight loss?

(The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition)

Long-term weight loss and weight maintenance can be extremely difficult, but it is not impossible. Even though dieters are perceived as failing in long-term maintenance of weight loss, the research found that around 20% of overweight or obese people manage to keep the weight off.

Is it possible to lose weight permanently?

(Psychology Today) (Harvard Health Publishing)

According to the Biggest Loser study, the answer would be: yes, it is possible, but it demands sacrifice.

Having taken into consideration the fact that six years following the end of the show its participants regained 90 pounds on average, and still had a slow metabolic rate, Harvard experts agree that extreme weight loss could lead to metabolism opposing further weight loss. 

A sound plan, perseverance and determination are needed to maintain the goal weight.


To sum up, the weight loss facts presented above display the rising issue of obesity and the sedentary lifestyle on a global scale. Losing weight and sticking to a healthy, balanced diet is key to successfully avoiding different illnesses such as diabetes, heart failure, and metabolic syndrome. 

What is more, individuals who are considering using cannabis in order to lose weight should not worry, because there are heaps of studies claiming that cannabis is great for staying fit. Hopefully, these weight loss statistics will be helpful along your fitness journey.

List of Sources:

Hermina Drah

Hermina believes that every day is a chance to learn something new about the obscure world around us. The driving force behind her writing is her passion for sharing knowledge with others all around the world. After attaining her master’s degree in English language and literature, she has decided to join the team of creative writers dedicated to delivering the hottest content on the web. So what are Hermina’s favorite topics to cover? Animals, good books, health, fitness, self-care—you name it.

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