Sunday 22 April 2018

One-third of global population now overweight

(Stock picture)
(Stock picture)

John von Radowitz

Almost a third of adults and children around the world are overweight, a study has found.

Many are at risk of potentially fatal diseases despite not being classified as obese, say researchers.

Of four million deaths attributed to excess body weight in 2015, 40pc were cases in which body mass index (BMI) fell below the obesity threshold.

The findings, reported in the 'New England Journal of Medicine', show a "growing and disturbing global crisis", said the authors.

Dr Christopher Murray, one of the researchers from the University of Washington, said: "People who shrug off weight gain do so at their own risk - risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer and other life-threatening conditions."

The findings, from 195 countries and territories around the world are partly based on data from the Global Burden of Disease study which examined the health impact of more than 300 diseases and injuries.

In 2015, about 2.2 billion children and adults worldwide - 30pc of the global population - were overweight, said the researchers.

The total included almost 108 million children and more than 600 million adults with a BMI above 30, meaning they were obese.

Egypt had the largest proportion of obese adults, making up 35pc of the population.

The US had the highest rate of obesity among children and young people, 13pc of whom fell into this category. It also had the largest number of obese adults, 79.4 million, in 2015.

Irish Independent

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