Nearly 1/3 of NY Metro Residents Consider Themselves Overweight, New Poll Finds

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Nearly 1/3 of NY Metro Residents Consider Themselves Overweight, New Poll Finds

Almost one-third of New York metro area residents consider themselves overweight, according to the findings of a recent poll.

Mount Sinai South Nassau’s latest Truth in Medicine Poll also found that nearly a quarter of metro area residents say they’d take a prescription weight-loss drug to slim down, and that 10% of those surveyed are taking or know someone using Ozempic, Mounjaro, or Wegovy to shed pounds. 

“These treatments were not intended to serve as an alternative to regular exercise and healthy eating to lose a few extra pounds quickly,” said Aaron E. Glatt, MD, chair of the Department of Medicine at the Oceanside hospital “They were created to manage type 2 diabetes and obesity.”

The poll results come as the use of drugs such as Ozempic for weight loss have contributed to medication shortages for Americans with diabetes who need those drugs. The survey revealed that out of those who knew someone or were themselves taking Ozempic, Mounjaro, or Wegovy, most were Black women under 50 years old.

While the three drugs can generate weight loss, only Wegovy is FDA-approved for weight management for obese or overweight individuals with weight-related comorbidities. The others are only approved for those with type 2 diabetes to control blood glucose levels.

“The increasing use of these drugs as a convenience to lose a few pounds concerns me,” said Efie Tsomos, MD, chief of the Division of Endocrinology at Mount Sinai South Nassau. “It’s becoming increasingly difficult for some of our patients to get their prescriptions filled at their local pharmacies.”

One-half of respondents to the Truth in Medicine Poll said they binge eat, and 60% said they eat two or more fast food meals per week, while 22% said they eat four or more per week.

Glatt noted that many may turn to a prescribed injection to lose weight because “exercise and dieting do not seem to be working for many. A majority of respondents who made a New Year’s resolution to lose weight reported as of late February that ‘it is not going very well.’”

He suggested that New Yorkers who are concerned with their weight speak with their doctor and form a healthy weight loss plan that works for them.

“I strongly encourage all adults and parents of children who are struggling with their weight to talk about it with their health care providers and work to develop a short- and long-term program to manage it,” said Adhi Sharma, MD, president of Mount Sinai South Nassau.

“At the same time, physicians are in an ideal position to talk with patients about their weight and prescribe a plan of action to successfully manage it.”

The Truth in Medicine Poll surveyed 600 residents from Long Island and New York City in mid-February.

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