Bahrain '10th fattest in the world'
Manama, July 5, 2012
Bahrain has been ranked among the world’s top 10 fattest nations, taking the 10th spot, according to an international study.
The Weight of Nations: An Estimation of Adult Human Biomass, says people consume nearly 3,000 calories daily and the average adult weighs about 74kg.
“An average Bahraini adult consumes 2,889 calories per day,” the study showed. “Nearly half are either obese or overweight.”
The majority of those obese people are women, but more men are overweight, sparking a warning over the growing pattern of unhealthy lifestyles among adults.
'So we have several overweight males, who are on the verge of being obese,' said Dr Nadia Gharib, public health directorate, nutrition section head, Health Ministry. 'The obesity rate among adults aged 20 and above is about 30 per cent and if you also include people who are overweight it shoots up to 54 per cent.'
However, among adolescents, aged between seven and 18, the obesity rate is nearly 24per cent.
The study was compiled by a team of European researchers from London-based online publisher BioMed Central, which ranked Bahrain number 10 in the heaviest category.
'In Bahrain an average adult consumes 2,889 calories per day and the average weight of adults is 13.6 per tonne,' said the study. 'Currently, more than a billion adults are overweight and in all regions of the world the entire population distribution of body mass is moving upwards.'
Kuwait, Qatar and UAE are also included in the list, ranking second, fourth and sixth respectively with the US topping the chart.
The team used data for each country from available information on body mass index and height distribution to estimate average adult body mass.
However, some countries and territories were excluded from the analysis due to insufficient statistics.
The report also quotes a United Nations projection that the world population could grow an additional 2.3 billion people by 2050.
Researchers also warned that increased global demand for food arising from a rise in body mass could lead to higher food prices.
They also compiled a Lightest 10 Nations list, which is topped by Bangladesh and includes Nepal, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Ethiopia, Cambodia, North Korea and Democratic Republic of Congo.
Meanwhile, health officials are trying to tackle the growing problem in the Ministry's five specialised nutrition clinics, which deal with obesity, diabetes and hypertension.
Plans are also underway to open the sixth facility in either Manama or Isa Town. The ministry runs the existing clinics at the National Bank of Bahrain Health Centre, Dair, Arad, Hamad Town and East Riffa. – TradeArabia News Service