What has population and growth got to do with obesity?
by Professor Garry Egger
Obesity is now the biggest epidemic the world has ever seen – bigger in numbers than the bubonic plague of the 14th century or the great influenza epidemic of 1918. Yet despite its obvious causes – over-eating, inactivity and an (over-rated) influence of genes – no single country has been able to slow the epidemic down.
Over 15% of the world’s population are now overweight or obese (in Australia the figure is 56%) – and all this only since around 1980!
The question that has to be asked is why? How is it that humans have existed in some form for probably a million years with very few ever asking the question ‘does my bum look too big in this?’, but that obesity has become rampant in the last 30 years?