Obesity on the rise in France as Brits continue to get fatter
17th October 2012
A high-fat junk food diet and increasingly sedentary lifestyle is being blamed for a rising obesity problem in France. Statistics show that since 1997 the average French person has piled on an extra 3.6kg in weight, with a typical person now weighing 11 stone 6lbs. In addition, the French have also grown 0.7cm in height as well as adding an extra 1.3cm to their waists. It has also been revealed that a massive 7 million adults in France are now classified as ‘obese’ – nearly double that of the number from fifteen years ago. This equates to 15% of the population of France and works out at roughly one in seven men and nearly one in six women. In the report, a government sponsored survey by pharmacists Obepi-Roche, it was revealed that the age group that had seen the largest weight increase was the 18 to 24 year olds. The blame is being connected to an increasing addiction to fast food. In particularly, those who are less wealthy and living in industrial regions of northern and eastern France are apparently more likely to be carrying extra baggage than wealthier counterparts living in Paris, Brittany and the French Rivieria. Guillaume Garot, a member of the National Assembly of France and France’s food minister, was alarmed by the report and has called for traffic light colour coding on all food labels. This style of food labelling was finally brought into play in August this year by Tesco in the UK, after giving in to demands by shoppers. The system works by using the colours of traffic lights; red, amber or green, depending on how nutritious it is. Red is the unhealthiest so therefore, if a food product has red lights for sugar, salt and fat content, then it is probably a food product best avoided. Since 2005 Tesco had instead adopted a ‘guideline daily amounts’ (GDA) system. This showed the percentage of sugar, salt and fat in a product but did not incorporate any colours. Guillaume Garot was also incensed at food manufacturers for masquerading high-calorie food products as supposed healthy food options for consumers. He blasted, “These days you virtually need a degree in chemistry to understand the nutritional information on food labels. We need a simpler system that simply says in three colours if a food will make you fat, if it’s neutral or if it’s healthy. This is a health problem that affects the whole of our society and the government will tackle it as a matter of priority.” However, France is still classified as being Europe’s second thinnest nation and the obesity crisis stretches far and wide to many other European countries. Greece holds the unwanted title of being the fattest nation in Europe, where an astonishing 70% of people are ‘overweight’. According to NHS definitions, you are overweight if you have a body mass index (BMI) that is between 25 and 29. A BMI of between 30 and 40, results in an ‘obese’ classification. The statistics are certainly eyebrow-raising a little closer to home though. Britain’s women are the second biggest in Europe, with 62% overweight and 22% being obese. British men fair slightly better than the females, and come in at number five across Europe, behind Germany, Greece, Finland and Ireland. The dangers of obesity may be underestimated by many, but are certainly life-threatening in the long-term. Diabetes, cancer, chronic heart disease and high blood pressure are just a few of the conditions that obesity can cause, as well as erectile dysfunction for men in many cases. By adopting a healthy lifestyle and diet in conjunction with a scientifically proven weight loss aid such as XLS-Medical or the prescription medication Xenical, you can begin to lose weight and dramatically cut your chances of developing a fatal health problem in the future. Both XLS-Medical and Xenical are available today from Medical Specialists at incredibly low prices.