See Overweight and obesity among Australian children and adolescents for more information on this age group.
In 2017–18, 2 in 3 (67%) of Australians aged 18 and over were overweight or obese. Put another way, approximately 12.5 million adults were overweight or obese. About 1 in 3 (36%) adults were overweight but not obese, and about 1 in 3 (31%) were obese. About 1 in 9 (12%) adults were severely obese, which is defined in this report as having a BMI of 35 or more (Table S4).
For all measures of overweight and obesity, men had higher rates than women did:
- 75% of men and 60% of women were overweight or obese
- 33% of men and 30% of women were obese
- 42% of men and 30% of women were overweight but not obese (Table S2).
Overweight and obesity is distributed differently among men and women, as shown in the BMI calculator.
Across age groups for men, the proportion who were overweight or obese increased with age from 52% at 18–24 to 83% at 45–54, plateaued until 65–74, and then decreased to 65% at age 85 years and over.
Across age groups for women, the proportion who were overweight or obese increased with age from 40% at 18–24 to 73% at 65–74, and decreased to 61% at age 85 years and over.
Obesity is more common in older age groups—about 1 in 6 men (18%) and 1 in 7 women (14%) aged 18–24 year were obese, compared with 2 in 5 men (42%) and women (39%) aged 65–74.