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About excess body weight

Excess weight, especially obesity, is a major risk factor for cardiovascular disease, Type 2 diabetes, some musculoskeletal conditions and some cancers. As the level of excess weight increases, so does the risk of developing these conditions. In addition, being overweight can hamper the ability to control or manage chronic disorders.

Excess body weight is a concern

Rates of overweight and obesity are continuing to rise in Australia. Collecting information on these trends is important for managing the health problems associated with them.


Body mass index (BMI) is widely used to monitor body weight.

Calculate your BMI (opens in popup window)

Overweight and obesity by the numbers

Infographic showing 3 in 5 adults are overweight

3 in 5

Australian adults are overweight or obese (based on BMI). That's over 12 million people!

Infographic showing 5% increase in overweight


more adults are overweight or obese than in 1995.

Infographic showing 1 in 4 children are overweight

1 in 4

Australian children are overweight or obese.

Infographic showing 30% increase in overweight among regional people

Over 30%

more people living in outer regional and remote areas are obese than people living in major cities.

Infographic showing third for burden of disease

3rd place

Overweight and obesity is only beaten by smoking and high blood pressure as a contributor to burden of disease.