General Obesity Facts
The prevalence of overweight and obesity is indicated by body mass index (BMI) as a measure of general obesity and is calculated as weight(kg) / height(m2). The categories are:
BMI < 18.5 Underweight
BMI 18.5 to < 25 Normal
BMI 25 to <30 Overweight
BMI > 30 Obese
Obesity is associated with heart disease, cancer, disability during older age and decreased life expectancy as well as serious chronic conditions such as Type 2 diabetes, hypertension and Hyperlipidaemia (high levels of fat in the blood that can lead to narrowing and blockages of blood vessels).
A high or very high waist circumference is associated with increased health risks. A raised waist circumference is defined as >102cm in men and >88 cm in women. In the UK 32% men and 44% women have a raised waist circumference.
2014 Adult Obesity Statistics
- In 2013, about one in four of the adult UK population was obese, 26.0% of men and 23.8% of women. This is a marked increase from the 1993 figures of 13.2% for men and 16.4% for women
- The percentage of the population classed as overweight (including obese) has increased from 57.6% (1993) to 67.1% (2013) in men and from 48.6% to 57.2% in women.
- The worldwide prevalence of obesity has more than doubled between 1980 and 2014. (http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs311/en/)
- In 2014, more than 1.9 billion adults, 18 years and older, were overweight. That's 39% (38% of men and 40% of women) of the world's adult population
- Of these over 600 million were obese, about 13% (11% of men and 15% of women) of the world’s adult population .
- Most of the world's population live in countries where overweight and obesity kills more people than underweight.
- Overweight and obesity are the fifth leading risk for global deaths. At least 2.8 million adults die each year as a result of being overweight or obese.
- 44% of diabetes cases, 23% of ischaemic heart disease cases and between 7-41% of certain cancer cases are attributable to overweight and obesity.
2013-2015 Childhood Obesity Statistics
- The number of children who are obese is growing and has more than tripled in England over the past 25 years
- The proportion of obese children leaving primaryhas been steadily increasing from 17.5% (2006/07) to 18.9% (2012/13) to 19.1% (2015) (http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs311/en/)
One plan by the authorities to reverse this childhood obesity trend is for councils to ban food takeways in a bid to stop children eating junk food. Read Dr Ashton's thoughts on this radical plan