World News

Global obese population hits 2.1bn


The latest research has released the total number of obese or overweight people across the globe that has topped 2.1 billion, about 29% of the world’s population.

According to the latest report published in the Lancet, the highest rates belong to the United States, China, India Russia, Brazil, Mexico, Egypt, Germany, Pakistan and Indonesia.

The study also unravels that the population of obese women is more than men in developing countries.

“Rates tended to be higher for women in developing countries as they were multi-tasking, looking after the family and working,” Prof Ali Mokdad, of the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) in Washington.

“Children and adults are not building up enough functioning muscle mass, and classical eating has been replaced by uncontrolled food intake spread over the day,” commented by Prof Hermann Toplak, at the University of Graz, in Austria.

While the study warned that rates of obesity were also rising across the world, many scientists were called for “urgent global leadership” to combat risk factors such as excessive calorie intake, inactivity, and “active promotion of food consumption by industry”.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), at least 2.8 million people dying each year as a result of being overweight or obese.

Many researchers have shown that obese people are more prone to developing different types of cancers, including breast, bowel and womb cancer.

Choosing foods that are lower in energy density, avoiding fast food and sugary drinks, and opting for smaller portion sizes for meals will also help maintain a healthy weight.

Being physically active is also important for a healthy weight, and both diet and exercise have been directly linked to reduced cancer risk.

Governments, international partners, civil society, non-governmental organizations and the private sector all have vital roles to play in contributing to obesity prevention.

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