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Survey: Americans are fat...and delusional

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There's a big disconnect between Americans' opinion of their health and well being and reality, according to a survey by Philips Electronics.

There's a big disconnect between Americans' opinion of their health and well being and reality, according to a survey by Philips Electronics.

The survey is the first report from the Philips Center for Health and Well-being, a knowledge-sharing forum. The survey finds a few core disconnects. To wit:

  • Only 39 percent of Americans consider themselves overweight;
  • But the National Center for Health Statistics finds that 67 percent of U.S. adults are either overweight or obese.

Here's the deep dive:

Eighty percent of Americans say they are in excellent or generally good health. However, when the survey dug deeper only 51 percent said they are as fit as they could be and 29 percent say they are in the best shape ever. And 66 percent wish they could exercise more.

Something isn't adding up.

There are a bevy of other findings worth noting. Philips surveyed 1,503 Americans 18 to 65 and found:

  • 76 percent of Americans think medical technology will allow them to live longer;
  • 45 percent of Americans avoid going to the doctor as much as possible;
  • Americans generally consider 35 years old to be the new 40 in terms of middle age (stress is the main reason);
  • 60 percent of Americans say they are responsible for their health.

The statement and entire study can be found on the Philips site.

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Larry Dignan

Editor-in-Chief

Editor-in-Chief Larry Dignan is editor-in-chief of SmartPlanet and ZDNet. He is also editorial director of TechRepublic. Previously, he was an editor at eWeek, Baseline and CNET News. He has written for WallStreetWeek.com, Inter@ctive Week, New York Times and Financial Planning. He holds degrees from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the University of Delaware. He is based in New York but resides in Pennsylvania. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure