Charlotte, Today 16 percent of all children and teens in this country are overweight, and 65 percent of all people age 20 and older are overweight or obese. Excess weight and obesity are serious health threats because they are major risk factors for cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, and other serious health problems. The current generation of children may become the first in American history to live shorter lives than their parents. Medical expenditures attributed to both overweight and obesity had reached over $75 billion. A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine followed 900,000 adults for 16 years. They found a high body mass index was associated with up to 20 percent of cancer deaths in women and 14 percent in men.