San Francisco: A recent report from the University of Washington revealed that more than 2 billion people worldwide are overweight or obese, Anadolu Agency reported.
The study looked at the health data of 68 million people from 195 countries and territories between 1980 and 2015 and found obesity rates have doubled in more than 70 countries.
About 30 percent of the world’s population has a weight problem and 10 percent are considered obese, according to body mass index (BMI) – a somewhat controversial measurement that does not differentiate between muscle and fat mass.
More than 2,000 health experts worked on the study that was published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
“People who shrug off weight gain do so at their own risk - risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, and other life-threatening conditions,” Christopher Murray, an author on the study from the University of Washington, said in a statement.
The US had the most obese adults with 79 million in 2015. China was second with 57 million. With 35 percent of its adult population considered obese, Egypt had the highest obesity rate in the world. The lowest obesity rate was found in Vietnam, which has an obese population of about 1 percent.
China and India had the highest numbers of obese children, with 15 million and 14 million, respectively.
“Excess body weight is one of the most challenging public health problems of our time, affecting nearly one in every three people,” lead author Ashkan Afshin, also of the University of Washington, said in the study’s announcement.
“Over the past decade, numerous interventions have been evaluated, but very little evidence exists about their long-term effectiveness", Afshin said.