Nearly a third of French people are fat: study

19th September 2006, Comments 0 comments

PARIS, Sept 19, 2006 (AFP) - Nearly a third of France's population is overweight or obese, and waistlines are continuing to expand, according to a new survey released Tuesday.

PARIS, Sept 19, 2006 (AFP) - Nearly a third of France's population is overweight or obese, and waistlines are continuing to expand, according to a new survey released Tuesday.

The study, titled ObEpi 2006 and carried out by TNS Healthcare Sofres, found that 19.8 million people out of France's population of 63 million were packing excess weight, and that 5.9 million of them were obese — 2.3 million more than nine years ago.

Overall, the trend was slowing, although the figures showed that some segments of the populations were more at risk than others, low-income earners most notably.

"All generations are affected, but we are becoming obese younger and younger, which raises fears of worsening and earlier consequences for the younger generations," said Professor Arnaud Basdevant, a Paris hospital nutritionalist who jointly coordinated the study.

Obesity is a problem for many countries. The World Health Organisation considers it an epidemic.

According to the French survey, obesity afflicted nearly one person in five earning under EUR 34,800 euros per year compared to just one person in 20 earning more than EUR 63,600.

Women appeared to be more affected than men by obesity.

The survey, the fourth in a triennial study that began in 1997, was carried out on 23,747 people aged over 15.

"We are increasingly seeing major forms of obesity, the ones that are most dangerous to health, especially among the young. The health system should prepare to take on more and more grave obseity cases, including those aged over 65," Basdevant said.

He added that obesity multiplied by 10 the risk of diabetes, high blood pressure and other vascular problems.

Copyright AFP

Subject: French news

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