Americans 20 pounds heavier than in 1990

WASHINGTON, D.C.; November 29, 2011

According to the poll, we are an average of 20 pounds heavier than we were 20 years ago.

The average man now weighs 196 pounds, though most men say they'd like to weigh 181.

And the average woman weighs 160, but women say they'd like to weigh about 138 pounds.

The results are based on the Gallup's annual Health and Healthcare survey, which was conducted in early November. Gallup has asked Americans to say how much they weigh since 1990, and every year since 2001.

As their reported weight has gone up, so has their ideal weight. In this survey, more than two-thirds say they are over their "ideal" weight.

The disconnect with "ideal" weight also seems to be widening. Actual ideal weights, defined by the Body Mass Index, have not changed significantly over the past 20 years. Men are about 15 pounds over their ideal weight today, compared to 9 pounds over in 1990.

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