Earth Science News  





.
ABOUT US
'Tsunami' of obesity worldwide: study

by Staff Writers
Paris (AFP) Feb 4, 2011
A "tsunami of obesity" is unfurling across the world, resulting in a near-doubling of the numbers of dangerously overweight adults since 1980, doctors warned on Friday.

More than half a billion men and women -- nearly one in nine of all adults -- are clinically obese, according to research by a team from Imperial College London, Harvard and the World Health Organisation (WHO).

In 2008, the latest year for which statistics were available, nearly one woman in seven and one man in 10 were obese, it found.

Being too fat causes three million premature deaths each year from heart disease, diabetes, cancers and other disorders, according to the WHO.

The researchers described the tableau as "a population emergency."

"(It) will cost tens of millions of preventable deaths unless rapid and widespread actions are taken by governments and health-care systems worldwide," said the report, published by The Lancet.

The problem has been most prevalent in rich nations, rising most in the United States, followed by New Zealand and Australia for women, and Britain and Australia for men.

But many developing countries, especially in the Middle East and in rapidly urbanising areas, are catching up.

"These results suggest that overweight affects one-in-three adults and obesity affects one-in-nine adults -- a tsunami of obesity that will eventually affect all regions of the world," Sonia Anand and Salim Yusuf of Canada's McMaster University wrote in a commentary accompanying the study.

Global obesity rates more than doubled for men, from 4.8 percent of male adults in 1980 to 9.8 percent in 2008. For women, the corresponding jump was from 7.9 to 13.8 percent.

The standard for assessing weight is the body-mass index (BMI), in which one's weight in kilos is divided by the square of one's height in centimetres.

A BMI of 25 to 30 corresponds to being overweight, while above 30 is obese.

Pacific islanders weighed in with the highest BMI levels, between 34 and 35, and notched up among the sharpest increases over the last three decades as well.

In Europe, women in Russia and Moldova were at the upper end of the scale with BMIs of 27.2 and 27.1, while the heftiest men on the continent resided in the Czech Republic and Ireland.

At the other end of the spectrum, Swiss women were the most svelte, with their French and Italian counterparts vying for second place.

Italy holds the distinction of being the only country in Europe where women's average BMI declined, dropping from 25.2 to 24.8.

The study also reported changes in blood pressure and cholesterol levels across nations.

Western European countries -- especially Iceland, Andorra and Germany -- have among the highest cholesterol levels in the world, while African nations have the lowest.

Systolic blood pressure -- the maximum pressure exerted by the heart -- is highest in the Baltic, and in East and West Africa.

The same levels were common in wealthy nations a generation ago, but have dropped dramatically since then, the study showed.

High-income countries have also seen a drop in cardiovascular diseases since 1980, despite high levels of obesity.

The United States in particular saw reductions in high blood pressure and cholesterol levels as well as a slowdown in tobacco use, according to the study.

This suggests that lifestyle choices -- including limiting consumption of animal products and sodium, and increasing physical activity -- can play a key role in slashing heart disease.

Although commonly considered a "Western" problem, obesity is also growing in unexpected regions like the Middle East, where the average weight levels in several populations fall just shy of the benchmark for obesity.




Share This Article With Planet Earth
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit
YahooMyWebYahooMyWeb GoogleGoogle FacebookFacebook



Related Links
All About Human Beings and How We Got To Be Here



Tempur-Pedic Mattress Comparison

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News
ABOUT US
New Age Researchers Highlight How Man Is Changing The World
Leicester, UK (SPX) Feb 04, 2011
Human influence on the landscape, global warming, sea level rise, ocean acidification and biodiversity are highlighted in a new set of studies led by University of Leicester researchers. How this influence will be reflected in the distinctive geological record forms the basis of the studies published in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society A. Jan Zalasiewicz and Mark Willi ... read more

.
Get Our Free Newsletters Via Email
  


ABOUT US
'Worst-case' plan saved Australians: officials

New Approach Needed To Prevent Major 'Systemic Failures'

Australia flags taxpayer levy for floods

Designers seek creative solutions to rebuild Haiti

ABOUT US
New York Times net profit dips 26 percent

A Cool Way To Make Glass

Google puts iPad in the crosshairs

Google offers Street View art gallery tours

ABOUT US
Strange floating 'blob' found off Florida

Oysters disappearing worldwide: study

Amazon's double dry spell worries scientists

Ocean Fertilization: Summary For Policymakers

ABOUT US
VIMS Team Glides Into Polar Research

'Hidden Plumbing' Helps Slow Greenland Ice Flow

Study alters Greenland glacier melt view

Scientists Find That Debris On Certain Himalayan Glaciers May Prevent Melting

ABOUT US
Sugar prices fall back from 30-year peak

Australia cyclone could cost farming at least $500 million

Innovation Of The Week: Giving Farmers A Reason To Stay

Philippines rice 2010 farm output hit by weather

ABOUT US
Narrow escapes from Australia cyclone horror

Australia reels from once-in-a-century cyclone

Death toll from Philippine rains rises to eight

Australia braces for 'worst ever storm'

ABOUT US
Nigerian church ordered to stop faith healing ads

Road May Disrupt Migration And Ruin Serengeti

Nigerian army warns troops in volatile central region

China says Sudan referendum a step towards peace

ABOUT US
Earliest Middle East cemetery discovered

Technique pulls fingerprints from fabric

New Age Researchers Highlight How Man Is Changing The World

Mathematical Model Explains How Complex Societies Emerge And Collapse


The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2010 - SpaceDaily. AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement