With the dual demons of overly processed foods and a general decline in physical activity, it's hardly surprising that waistlines across the country have been steadily expanding over the last decade. But, what may be more intriguing is that Americans are seem to be adjusting their concept of what a healthy weight actually is.

According to the national polling service Gallup, the average ideal weight of everyday Americans has been increasing at just as steady a rate as their actual poundage. For example, when Gallup issued a survey regarding these two figures in 1991, the company found that 161 pounds was the mean (self-reported) weight, while 149 pounds was the designated ideal.

"Americans appear to be slowly shifting to higher weights, adjusting their expectations of what is ideal over time – mirroring the increase in actual weight," the report concludes.

Whatever the reason for this shift, though, it may irrelevant in the long run. That's because, despite the fact that the majority of Americans who took the survey say they are weigh more than their ideal, only 25 percent state that they were taking steps to shed the extra pounds to meet their goal.

Reaching a healthy body weight isn't just a matter of aesthetics – it also concerns your overall health. In addition to reducing your risk of chronic conditions associated with obesity, you may find that pursuing your ideal waistline through regular exercise and a nutritious diet will set you up with lifelong habits that will help you age gracefully and feel great. That is provided, of course, that your ideal is based on your frame and not a photoshopped image from a magazine.

However, if you've strayed too far from your goal for dieting and exercise to be viable or effective, we can help. At Longevity Centres of America, we offer medical weight loss in Houston and Denver to help you regain control of your health.