Global childhood obesity rates are now 10 times higher than in 1975 according to a new World Health Organization study.
Rates of childhood obesity have skyrocketed according to the findings with only 11 million obese kids and teens around the world in 1975. By 2016, that number had risen to 124 million, with several million more children considered overweight but below the threshold for obesity.
Current rates of childhood obesity are highest in Polynesia and Micronesia, where 25.4 per cent of girls and 22.4 per cent of in boys are not just overweight but obese.
Among high-income countries, the United States had the highest obesity rates, Canada was ranked 44th for obesity among boys and 67th for girls. Overall, 9.9 per cent of Canadian girls are obese, as are 14.7 per cent of boys.
There are still more underweight than overweight kids in the world. But if the current trends continue, that will reverse by 2022.
The study’s lead author, Prof. Majid Ezzati of Imperial College London’s School of Public Health, says obesity rates continue to soar in low- and middle-income countries, in part because of the growing availability of high-calorie, low-nutrient processed foods. And while obesity rates have mostly plateaued in higher income countries, they remain “unacceptably” high.
Researchers point to the huge health consequences that will arise for these kids in the future as they move to adulthood unless changes are made.
The full report can be viewed HERE.
Tomorrow marks officially World Obesity Day. World Obesity Day was launched in 2015 to stimulate and support practical solutions to help people achieve and maintain a healthy weight, and to reverse the obesity crisis. For more information go to their website HERE.
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