A recent poll confirms not so great news on the obesity front: We’re still fat. More than one-third of residents in 12 states are considered obese, according to analysis released last month by the Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
The analysis was based on state obesity figures provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The trust’s executive director, Jeffrey Levi, said states aren’t investing “anywhere near what we need” to turn the tide of obesity. But, “the good news is that we have a growing body of evidence and approaches that we know can help reduce obesity, improve nutrition and increase physical activity based on making healthier choices easier for Americans.”
So which states top America’s scales?
Obesity rate: 30.4 percent
Population: 25.7 million
Everything really is bigger in Texas. The Lone Star State has one of the country's highest obesity rates, at roughly 30 percent. It also fares the worst in terms of another health-related number: According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Texas has the highest number of uninsured residents in the nation, at 26.3 percent.
Photo: One of the reasons for ongoing popularity of the Texas-based Whataburger? The fast food franchise is open 24 hours a day.
10. Kentucky (tie)
Obesity rate: 30.4 percent
Population: 4.37 million
Kentucky fares a little better this year: Its obesity rate decreased about one percent from last year.
But one of the state's biggest problems is that their obesity levels are particularly high in children.
Next to Mississippi, Kentucky youth drink the most soft drinks in the country—up to 89 gallons per person, according to information researchers at the University of Kentucky's Nutrition Education Program compiled from the USDA's Food Environment Atlas.
Photo: AP Photo/Kathy Willens
8. South Carolina
Obesity rate: 30.8 percent
Population: 4.68 million
Figures show how the obesity epidemic has grown over the past two decades. For example, 15 years ago, South Carolina had a combined obesity and overweight rate of 51.4 percent. Ten years ago, it was 57.4 percent. Now, the combined rate is roughly 67 percent.
The South is the worst region in the country as far as obesity rates. Eight of the ten heaviest states are in the South.
Photo: In this image taken March 19, 2012, cookbook author Nathalie Dupree's Shrimp and Grits with spinach and tomatoes recipe is shown in Concord, N.H.
8. Indiana (tie)
Obesity rate: 30.8 percent
Population: 6.52 million
Indiana is one state that's been moving up in the ranks—in a bad way. In 2011, Indiana had the 15th highest obesity ranking in the country. This year, the Hoosier State shot up to No. 8 in obesity rankings.
"Obesity has contributed to a stunning rise in chronic disease rates and health care costs," Levi said in a statement, adding that "it is one of the biggest health crises the country has ever faced."
Photo: Everything is fried at the Indiana State Fair. AP Photo/Darron Cummings
Obesity rate: 30.9 percent
Population: 2.94 million
It's no secret obesity is costly in more ways than one: In 2006, obesity-related medical costs totaled $147 billion a year, or nearly 10 percent of total medical spending, according to a 2011 study in Health Affairs. The bulk of the spending is generated from treating obesity-related diseases, such as diabetes.
Photo: Isabella Herrington, 9, of Jessieville, Ark., left, is examined by Dr. Karen Young at an Arkansas Children's Hospital clinic Tuesday, May 30, 2006, in Little Rock, Ark. Arkansas instituted first-in-the-nation obesity testing for public school students (AP Photo/Danny Johnston).
Obesity rate: 31.1 percent
Population: 3.79 million
Oklahoma State Health Commissioner Dr. Terry Cline encouraged Oklahoma residents earlier this year to eat a healthier diet, saying that lifelong health begins with wellness.
“Small commitments to health can have a big impact when they are spread throughout an entire family and community. These practices can result in changes that will improve our state’s health outcomes,” Cline said.
He encouraged Oklahomans to “start small but think big” and offered these examples: Start small by adding fruits and vegetables to your diet; and move more by adding steps to your day. Think big by advocating in your community to increase safe routes for kids to walk and bike to school.
Photo: Butcher Freddie Quina cuts meat at Super Cao Nguyen in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, July 25, 2012. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)
Obesity rate: 31.3 percent
Population: 9.87 million
Michigan unfortunately moved up in the ranks this year. Last year, Michigan was ranked No. 10 for having the worst obesity rates.
About 16 percent of children in the state age 2 to 5 are overweight, while 13 percent are obese. In an attempt to combat Michigan's childhood obesity epidemic, Gov. Rick Snyder announced last September that the state would begin tracking kids' body mass index through the Michigan Care Improvement Registry.
Photo: Fast food French fries are photographed in Southfield, Mich., Sunday, Feb. 4, 2007. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)
Obesity rate: 32 percent
Population: 4.8 million
Alabama was ranked the second fattest state in the nation last year.
Alabama health officials are trying to get people to slim down. The Associated Press reports the annual Scale Back Alabama weight-reduction program drew almost 30,000 participants this year who lost a combined 148,963 pounds.
Photo: Lauren Cohen has her glucose measured Sunday, Oct. 9, 2005, in Norfolk, Va., during an event which was part of the Norfolk State University Health Initiative. Similar weight-loss initiatives have been started at five other historically black colleges: Talladega College in Alabama; Alcorn State University in Mississippi; Lincoln University in Pennsylvania; South Carolina State University; and Wiley College in Texas. (AP Photo/Jason Hirschfeld)
3. West Virginia
Obesity rate: 32.4 percent
Population: 1.85 million
Nearly seven in 10 adults in West Virginia are overweight or obese. West Virginia is No. 1 in the country for diabetes, heart attacks and obesity, according to the 2011 Gallup-Healthways rankings.
A screening of more than 135,000 state fifth-graders last year showed that one in four has high blood pressure, 26 percent have high cholesterol and 29 percent are obese, according to West Virginia University's Cardiac screening data.
Photo: Former New Orleans Chef LeRoy Crump, Jr. works at a fast pace during the lunchtime crowd in his Clarksburg, W.Va. cajun restaurant (AP Photo/Dale Sparks)
Obesity rate: 33.4 percent
Population: 4.57 million
Louisiana was ranked the fifth fattest state in last year’s research when the state’s obesity rate was at 31.6 percent.
For many states, rates of chronic health problems, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, have increased dramatically over the past two decades. Diabetes rates have doubled in ten states in the past 15 years, according to the Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. In 1995, Louisiana had a diabetes rate of 6.2 percent. Now the diabetes rate is 10.7 percent. Louisiana had a hypertension rate of 23.5 percent 15 years ago. Now, the rate is 32.5 percent.
Photo: Toby Talbot/AP
Obesity rate: 34.9 percent
Population: 2.97 million
Mississippi keeps ranking No. 1 on a list they don't even want to be part of.
The state also topped this particular list for years and even has crept up from its 34.4 statistic last year. The percentage of Mississippians who are obese has more than doubled in the last 20 years, from 15 to 35 percent since 1991.
Twenty-six of the 30 states with the highest obesity rates are in the Midwest and South, the report says.