Close up image of a caretaker helping older woman walk

The rate of obese nursing home residents jumped from 22% to 28% between 2005 and 2015, according to research presented at the 2018 American Geriatrics Society conference.

Using the Minimum Data Set, the study tracked the weight of long-stay nursing home residents by classes including underweight (BMI < 18.5), normal-to-overweight (18.5<=BMI< 35), Class II (35 BMI < 40) and Class III (BMI >= 40) obesity. A description of the study, which was discussed  in Orlando last weekend, was published online by the Annals of Long-Term Care on Monday.

In the 10-year period, female residents had higher prevalence of obesity than male residents, increasing from 4% to 7%.

In 2015, Class III residents, the most severely obese, were younger than the others. They also had more chronic conditions but lower rates of functional or cognitive decline

The authors also noted obese residents had specific comorbidities and functional status compared with other residents, which could help facilities prepare to care for this growing population.