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"One in two" Swiss is overweight

Around half the Swiss population is carrying too much weight, according to a study whose results have been published in the SonntagsZeitung newspaper.

This content was published on November 20, 2011 - 12:31
swissinfo.ch and agencies

In all, 53 per cent of the 1,445 people surveyed showed a waist circumference that revealed them to be overweight – with more women affected than men.

Around 30 per cent of the people deemed to be too heavy were revealed to be severely so, with the other 23 per cent classified as overweight, according to the Lausanne University Hospital survey.

The measurements were carried out in 2010 and 2011 as part of a study commissioned by the Federal Health Office into people’s salt intake in Switzerland. The results of this report, published on November 14, found that the population consumed too much salt, a situation the health office is keen to counteract.

The conclusions concerning weight were revealed by the newspaper on Sunday. It reported that 58 per cent of the women taking part were overweight compared with 48 per cent of men.

Michael Beer, head of food safety at the health office, told the SonntagsZeitung that although the results still had to be checked for their representativeness, they did seem to confirm earlier findings. “We have a massive problem of people being overweight in Switzerland,” he said.

Nevertheless, Switzerland is still in the “lower half” internationally. Studies have shown around 70 per cent of people to be overweight in Germany and the United States.

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