One-Third of Global Population are Obese, Major Study Finds

By Sharon Moore on June 15, 2017

Nearly a third of the world’s population is now overweight or obese, according to the latest research. Experts said obesity has become a ’rising pandemic’ and a ’disturbing global public health crisis’, which is leading to booming rates of diabetes and heart disease. 

The major study, which looked at data from 195 countries around the globe in 2015, found 2.2billion people - 30 per cent of the world’s 7.5billion population- were overweight. Of these, 711million are classed as obese - nearly 10 per cent of the global population.’ 

It also found rates of obesity doubled over that period in more than 70 countries, and continuously increased in most other nations. 

Obesity is defined as having a ’body mass index’ or BMI score over 30, whereas being overweight is having a BMI of more than 25. 

Obesity in UK is well-above the average 

The study found that 67 per cent of adult men and 57 per cent of adult women in UK are overweight. Of these, 24 per cent of British adults, roughly around 12 million, are considered obese. This is a vast increase from the obesity rate in 1980, when only 16 per cent of the population were considered obese.  

The lowest obesity rates were in Bangladesh and Vietnam, where they were just 1 per cent.

Dr Christopher Murray, a researcher from the University of Washington in the US, said people need to start to take their weight seriously. ’People who shrug off weight gain do so at their own risk – risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, and other life-threatening conditions,’ 

’Those half-serious New Year’s resolutions to lose weight should become year-round commitments to lose weight and prevent future weight gain.’ 

The new findings were published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine journal.

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