Health

‘India has 14.4 mn children with obesity’

Photo for representational purpose.  

India has the second highest number of obese children in the world after China, according to a study that has found that 14.4 million children in the country have excess weight.

Globally, over two billion children and adults suffer from health problems related to being overweight or obese, and an increasing percentage of people die from these health conditions, researchers said.

Of the four million deaths attributed to excess body weight in 2015, nearly 40% occurred among people whose body mass index (BMI) fell below the threshold considered “obese”.

The findings represent “a growing and disturbing global public health crisis,” according to a paper published in The New England Journal of Medicine. In 2015, obesity affected 2.2 billion children and adults worldwide, or almost 1 in three of all people. This includes nearly 108 million children and more than 600 million adults with BMI exceeding 30, the threshold for obesity, according to the study. China had 15.3 million children with obesity and India 14.4 million.

Among adults, the U.S. topped the list with 79.4 million people with obesity and China came second with 57.3 million people.

“People who shrug off weight gain do so at their own risk — risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, and other life-threatening conditions,” said Christopher Murray from the University of Washington. “Those half-serious New Year’s resolutions to lose weight should become year-round commitments to lose weight and prevent future weight gain,” he said.

The study, which spans 195 countries and territories from 1980 through 2015, includes analyses of other studies on the effects of excess weight and potential links between high BMI and cancer.

The prevalence of obesity has doubled since 1980 in more than 70 countries and has increased in most other nations, the study said. Although the prevalence of obesity among children has been lower than among adults, the rate of increase in childhood obesity in many countries was greater than that of adults.

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Printable version | Nov 25, 2020 3:37:36 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/health/india-has-144-mn-children-with-obesity/article19030849.ece

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