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Swiss get good marks in obesity study

Although more than a third of the population is overweight, Switzerland has come out well in a survey of obesity in industrialised countries.

This content was published on September 23, 2010 - 17:22
swissinfo.ch

A report by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) published on Thursday puts Switzerland third out of its 33 member countries for the number of residents with weight problems. Only Japan and South Korea did better.

In the OECD countries as a whole, half of all adults are overweight and one in six is obese, the report says.

In Switzerland the figures are 37.5 per cent overweight and “only” 8.5 per cent obese. More men – 46 per cent of the population – are overweight than women, at 29 per cent. The figures for obesity are nine and eight per cent respectively.

In addition, 15 per cent of Swiss children aged between six and 13 are overweight, some of them to the point of obesity.

At the top of the scale, the United States and Mexico are a cause for particular alarm. In the US 68 per cent of people are overweight and 34 per cent of them are obese. In Mexico the overweight figure is even higher at 69.5 per cent, but there is a slightly lower proportion of obesity, 29.5 per cent.

The OECD expects that most countries will see an increase in the number of overweight people in the next ten years. It warns of increased costs to health services and calls for public-private cooperation to combat the problem.

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