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A third of the world's population are overweight or obese
Major study reveals
Published in Alriyadh on 12 - 06 - 2017

Nearly a third of the world's population is now overweight or obese, a major study has revealed.
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.
Excess weight is already contributing to one in every 14 deaths from any cause, the researchers found, a figure which they said is bound to rise.
Only 61 per cent of these weight-related deaths were to people classed as 'obese' - with the remaining 39 per cent to people who were merely 'overweight'.
The startling paper, based on a compilation of figures 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.
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.
The researchers found that the UK is well above the global average, with 67 per cent of adult men and 57 per cent of adult women overweight.
Of these, 24 per cent of British adults - 12 million people – are considered obese, a vast increase since 1980, when only 16 per cent were in this category.
Among children, 7.5 per cent are obese, a total of 1 million British children, up from 5.5 per cent in 1980.
The lowest obesity rates were in Bangladesh and Vietnam, where they were just 1 per cent.
China, with 15.3 million, and India, with 14.4 million, had the highest numbers of obese children.
The United States, with a rate of 33 per cent obesity, and 79.4 million obese people, and China, with a rate of just 5 per cent but a total of 57.3 million obese people, had the highest numbers of obese adults in 2015.
'People need to take their weight seriously'
Researcher Dr Christopher Murray, of 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,' he said.
'Those half-serious New Year's resolutions to lose weight should become year-round commitments to lose weight and prevent future weight gain.'
How was the study carried out?
The findings, published in the prestigious New England Journal of Medicine, used figures compiled by the World Health Organisation between 1980 and 2015.
It found rates of obesity doubled over that period in more than 70 countries, and continuously increased in most other nations.
Dr Ashkan Afshin, the paper's lead author, said: 'Excess body weight is one of the most challenging public health problems of our time, affecting nearly one in every three people.
'Over the past decade, numerous interventions have been evaluated, but very little evidence exists about their long-term effectiveness.'
What did they find?
The team found that excess weight contributed to 4million deaths around the world in 2015, 7.1 per cent or one in 14 of deaths of any cause.
Some 61 per cent of these weight-related deaths were among 'obese' people - with 39 per cent to people who were merely 'overweight'.
This finding suggests health problems start at a lower weight than previously thought.
Globally, 65 per cent weight-related deaths were due to heart disease, 14 per cent were due to type 2 diabetes, 7 per cent linked to kidney disease and 9 per cent to cancer.
A report published by NHS Digital in March revealed a quarter of adults in England are inactive and take less than 30 minutes of exercise every week.
The rates are even worse for women and 27 per cent do less than half an hour's moderate activity a week.
REDUCING THE OBESITY BURDEN
NHS experts are desperate to reduce the burden of obesity, a problem worsened by the fact the issue often starts in childhood and many parents are in denial about their child's weight.
Officials are increasingly worried that obesity has become 'normalised' in Britain because so many children are overweight.
A study by Newcastle University, presented last month at the European Congress on Obesity, found only 30 per cent parents with an overweight child correctly identified them as having a weight problem.
The NHS and Newcastle academics are developing a computer programme to get around this issue, by shocking parents into taking notice.
The programme takes a child's size measurements and creates a 3D image of what they will look like in later life.
An early trial found that overweight children whose parents were shown the images put on nearly 9lb (4kg) less weight on average in the following year than other children.


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