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Obesity epidemic by 2030, says World Health Organisation

Three in every four men and two in every three women in the UK will be overweight by 2030


According to new predictions from the World Health Organisation, 73 per cent of men and 63 per cent of women in the UK are expected to be overweight or obese that year.

Experts say the crisis will be of “enormous proportions” and have highlighted that the Republic of Ireland will be at the forefront of the trend.

They have calculated the proportion of obese and overweight men in the Irish Republic is projected to rise to 89 per cent with a corresponding 85 per cent of women falling into this category in 2030.

Dr Laura Webber, from the UK Health Forum in London, who co-led the research, said: “Our study presents a worrying picture of rising obesity across Europe.

Policies to reverse this trend are urgently needed.

Although there is no ‘silver bullet’ for tackling the epidemic, governments must do more to restrict unhealthy food marketing and make healthy food more affordable.”

Being “overweight” is clinically defined by a Body Mass Index (BMI) – a measure relating height and weight – of 25 to 29.9, and “obese” by a BMI of 30 and above.

For this study, the “overweight” category also included anyone who was obese.

Using these criteria, researchers looked at data from all 53 countries in the WHO European region, to compare recorded and projected figures for 2010 and 2030.

Earlier this month, figures published by the National Child Measurement Programme revealed a Year Six primary school child weighed in at a staggering 24 stone.

The 10-year-old who is aged between 10 and 11, was examined as part of the government-backed survey.

It saw more than one million children (in reception and year six) measured in a bid to determine the scale of the child obesity problem in the UK.

The morbidly obese boy was one of 312 children to tip the scales at more than 16 stone.

The statistics also revealed three five-year-olds who weighed in at more than 9 stone.

It is important to remember the balance of a healthy diet and exercise when it comes to raising your children.

Child obesity can lead to health concerns including diabetes and heart disease for future generations of adults.

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