Washington: A report released by US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Tuesday said more than 40 percent of US women are obese compared to 35 percent of men. The new figures published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (AMA) showed a further increase in the obesity rate compared to a decade ago when the rate was 38 percent among women and 34 percent among men, Efe news reported. At least four out of ten women in the US were considered obese in 2015, according to the CDC report. Overall, researchers found that nearly one-third of the US population aged over 20 are obese, a figure that has been climbing gradually since 1997 when the CDC began keeping records. African-American women were the group with the highest prevalence of obesity with 45 percent, followed by African-American men with 35 percent. The percentages of obesity in Hispanic women and men are 32.6 percent and 32 percent, respectively. The prevalence of obesity among white women is 27.2 percent compared to 30.2 percent among white men. The CDC classified individuals as obese when their body mass index, a measure based on weight and height to calculate appropriate body weight, exceeds 30.