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Withings Health Institute

Withings Health Observatory

Thanks to the power of connected devices, Withings is able to provide a national health observatory accessible to the general public. Using real-time data, this tool allows us to track the prevalence of key risk factors linked to lifestyle: sedentary behavior, overweight and obesity, and high blood pressure.

The observatory invites you to discover exclusive data and information gathered from the Withings community. Which American states are most affected by sedentary behaviors or by overweight and obesity? Are all age groups affected? Check out the informative graphs and charts of the Withings health observatory to learn more about health behaviors and different lifestyles across the US.

The observatory of physical activity

Scientific research consistently emphasizes the health benefits of physical activity, and its ability to decrease the risk of heart disease and diabetes. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that 27% of diabetes cases and 30% of all coronary diseases could be avoided with regular physical activity. Inactivity is one of the five main causes of immortality worldwide, along with: high blood pressure, tobacco use, hyperglycemia, and overweight and obesity1.

To help increase public awareness about the current state of obesity and the role that physical activity plays, Withings has created a real-time observatory of the physical activity levels throughout the US.

What is physical activity?

Physical activity is characterized by any movement produced by muscular contractions that leads to an energy expenditure higher than the resting expenditure. Physical activity does not necessarily mean playing a sport, or completing an intense workout. Simply walking for 30 minutes a day, for example, is considered a regular physical activity proven to yield numerous health benefits.

What are some examples of sedentary behaviors?

A sedentary lifestyle corresponds to one in which physical activity levels are low, or one in which there are long periods of inactivity. Inactivity is characterized by an energy expenditure comparable to that at rest. Sedentary activities include: sitting on a couch while watching TV, sitting and working at a computer or driving a car.

By Withings standards, subjects are considered sedentary when their average number of steps is lower than 4,000 a day (well below the 10,000 daily step recommendation as provided by the WHO). For more details about the definitions we use, please visit our section on data protection policies and definitions used.

1. World Health Organization. Global health risks - Mortality and burden of disease attributable to selected major risks. 2009.

Scroll down to discover the statistics on
physical activity

How do sedentary rates differ across the US*?

Analyze the latest figures for the prevalence of sedentary levels throughout the US*. Select a state to see its detailed profile.

The latest data from the Withings community shows that, for the selected category, New York is the state where people are the most active. On the contrary, Texas is the state with the highest rate of people with sedentary lifestyles. Visit the observatory regularly to follow the evolution of these tendencies.

* Anonymized and aggregated data, built on the basis of a random sample of 100000+ Withings users in the US. See below for our data protection policies and definitions used.
Data updated monthly, on a 12-month moving window. Last update: 08/01/2016.

Percentage of sedentary levels of activity

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%
of users with sedentary lifestyles

Back to US map


Activity level breakdown,
measured in percentage of subjects

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Prevalence of sedentary lifestyles
by age class

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Distribution of the number of daily steps, measured in percentage of subjects

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Overview of physical activity levels in the United States*

Discover the latest statistics on physical activity levels in the United States*: the distribution of the number of daily steps, and the total and per-age prevalences of sedentariness.


Activity level breakdown,
measured in percentage of subjects

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Prevalence of sedentary lifestyles
by age class

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Distribution of the number of daily steps, measured in percentage of subjects

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For the selected category, the latest figures from the Withings community show an average of 6000 daily steps, and a sedentary rate of 20.5% in the US. Among the 20 to 60 year old population, it is the 20-30 year olds who display the highest rate of sedentary behaviors (22.4%). Follow the real-time evolution of these indicators by regularly visiting the observatory.

* Anonymized and aggregated data, built on the basis of a random sample of 100000+ Withings users in the US. See below for our data protection policies and definitions used.
Data updated monthly, on a 12-month moving window. Last update: 08/01/2016.

The progression of physical activity levels among Withings users

See how the average number of daily steps of the Withings community progresses the first year of activity tracking.


Evolution of the average number of daily steps,
measured in percentage relative to the first month of activity tracking

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* Anonymized and aggregated data, built on the basis of a random sample of 100000+ Withings users. See below for our data protection policies and definitions used.
Global data, updated monthly. Last update: 08/01/2016.

What is the relation between physical activity and other vital indicators?
The body mass index.

Find out how physical activity and body mass index are correlated.


The class Sedentary is the one with the highest rate of adults affected by overweight or obesity, 68.9%.


Percentage of overweight or obese adults, by activity level class

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* Anonymized and aggregated data, built on the basis of a random sample of 100000+ Withings users in the US. See below for our data protection policies and definitions used.
Data updated monthly, on a 12-month moving window. Last update: 08/01/2016.

What is the relation between physical activity and other vital indicators?
The blood pressure level.

Find out how physical activity and blood pressure levels are correlated.


The class Sedentary is the one with the highest rate of individuals showing high blood pressure levels, 25.3%.


Percentage of subjects with high blood pressure, by activity level class

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* Anonymized and aggregated data, built on the basis of a random sample of 100000+ Withings users in the US. See below for our data protection policies and definitions used.
Data updated monthly, on a 12-month moving window. Last update: 08/01/2016.

What is the relation between physical activity and other vital indicators?
The sleep duration.

Find out how physical activity and sleep are correlated.


The class Sedentary is the one with the highest rate of sleep deprived individuals, 25.3%.



Percentage of sleep deprived subjects, by activity level class

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* Anonymized and aggregated data, built on the basis of a random sample of 100000+ Withings users in the US. See below for our data protection policies and definitions used.
Data updated monthly, on a 12-month moving window. Last update: 08/01/2016.

Did you know?

  • 27% of type 2 diabetes cases and 30% of coronary diseases could be avoided by regular physical activity1


  • Regular physical activity helps significantly reduce blood pressure levels in people suffering from high blood pressure2


  • 30 minutes a day of moderate-intensity activity (such as a brisk walk) is linked to a 30% decrease in the risk of early mortality3


  • Physical activity also has immense mental health benefits. In fact, studies have shown that physical activity has positive effects in preventing and treating depression4


  • Physical activity has also proven to be an effective way to reduce stress and improve psychological well-being5


  • Three to six hours of moderate or vigorous activity per week reduces the risk of developing colon cancer by 30-40%, and the risk of women developing breast cancer by 20-30%6


  • Physical activity also fights osteoporosis: active senior citizens are 20-40% less likely to suffer from hip fractures7


  • Physical activity limits the chances of developing age-related cognitive changes, such as the loss of brain plasticity8

1. World Health Organization. Global health risks - Mortality and burden of disease attributable to selected major risks. 2009.
2. Dickinson HO et al. Lifestyle interventions to reduce raised blood pressure: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials. J Hypertens, 24(2):215-33, 2006.
3. Simon C. Does the practice of a physical activity have a preventive effect on the emergence of pathologies?. Conference Physical activity for preventive purposes, 2005.
4. Lawlor DA, Hopker SW. The effectiveness of exercise as an intervention in the management of depression: systematic review and meta-regression analysis of randomised controlled trials. BMJ, 322(7289):763-7, 2001.
5. Schnohr P et al. Stress and life dissatisfaction are inversely associated with jogging and other types of physical activity in leisure time. Scand J Med Sci Sports, 15:107-112, 2005.
6. Lee IM. Physical activity and cancer prevention - data from epidemiologic studies. Med Sci Sports Exerc, 35(11):1823-7, 2003.
7. Gregg EW et al. Physical activity, falls, and fractures among older adults: a review of the epidemiologic evidence. J Am Geriatr Soc, 48(8):883-93, 2000.
8. Colcombe SJ et al. Cardiovascular fitness, cortical plasticity, and aging. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA, 101(9):3316-21, 2004.

We value your opinion!

This is the first version of the Withings Health Institute's online Observatory. It will evolve over the coming months to feature other data such as sleep data. The purpose of the observatory is to provide a comprehensive health overview covering various vital indicators. These new measures will also enrich existing analyses by making it possible to identify correlations.

In order to improve the current web page and determine future features, we would truly appreciate your feedback. What information did you find most relevant? Are there topics you would like to know more about?

Please provide your feedback by clicking on the link below. You can also contact us by email at: health@withings.com.

Thank you for your participation!

Data protection policies

Withings guarantees the confidentiality of personal data and protects the privacy of all its users. Our ethical commitments relative to the confidentiality of data are specified in detail in our privacy policy.

All data used by the Withings Health Institute are permanently anonymized and aggregated, built upon a pool of users having accepted the terms and conditions of use of Withings services.

In order to avoid reidentification of individual data, the data aggregation satisfies a minimum threshold relative to the size of each aggregate: if the number of units in each studied class is inferior to the minimum threshold, the corresponding data is excluded and replaced by "N/A". 0 is displayed as a valid numerical data.

Definitions

Physical activity level classes used are: Sedentary - number of daily steps < 4000 ; A bit active - 4000 ≤ number of daily steps < 7000 ; Moderately active - 7000 ≤ number of daily steps < 10000 ; Active - number of daily steps ≥ 10000.

BMI (Body Mass Index) classes used are those defined by the World Health Organization: Underweight - BMI < 18.5 kg/m2 ; Normal - 18.5 ≤ BMI < 25 kg/m2 ; Overweight - 25 ≤ BMI < 30 kg/m2 ; Moderate obesity - 30 ≤ BMI < 35 kg/m2 ; Severe obesity - 40 ≤ BMI < 40 kg/m2 ; Morbid obesity - BMI ≥ 40 kg/m2. Therefore, the prevalence of overweight and obesity corresponds to the percentage of subjects with a BMI greater than or equal to 25 kg/m2.

Blood pressure classes used are those defined by the American Heart Association: Hypotension - systolic pressure < 90 mmHg / diastolic pressure < 60 mmHg ; Normal - 90 ≤ systolic pressure < 120 mmHg / 60 ≤ diastolic pressure < 80 mmHg ; Prehypertension - 120 ≤ systolic pressure < 140 mmHg / 80 ≤ diastolic pressure < 90 mmHg ; Hypertension - systolic pressure ≥ 140 mmHg / diastolic pressure ≥ 90 mmHg.