U.S. to become fattest country in 33-member OECD: report

12:36, September 24, 2010      

Email | Print | Subscribe | Comments | Forum 

The United States will be " the fattest country" in the 33-member Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) by 2020, the group said in a report published by HealthDay News on Thursday.

In 10 years, a full 75 percent of Americans will be overweight unless the government, individuals and industry cooperate on a comprehensive strategy to combat the epidemic, the report noted.

With more and more people becoming overweight, the U.S. will be burdened with associated increases in disease rates and health care spending, the report said.

The cost in dollars of obesity, including higher health care spending and lost production, is already equivalent to one percent of the country's total gross domestic product, the report said.

These costs could rise two or threefold over the coming years, said the report.

Currently, about 70 percent of Americans are overweight, compared with well under 50 percent in 1980, according to the report.

The report cited unhealthy eating and lack of physical activity as the major reasons for the increasing numbers of overweight people.

"Food is much cheaper than in the past, in particular food that is not particularly healthy, and people are changing their lifestyles, they have less time to prepare meals and are eating out more in restaurants," said Franco Sassi, the OECD senior health economist who authored the report.

That plus the fact that people are much less physically active than in the past, Sassi said.

The lifespan of an obese person is up to 8-10 years shorter than that of a normal-weight person, the same loss of lifespan incurred by smoking, the report said.

Citizens of the world's richest countries are getting fatter and fatter and the United States is leading the charge, according to the report.

Source: Xinhua


  • Do you have anything to say?


Special Coverage
  • Premier Wen Jiabao visits Hungary, Britain, Germany
  • From drought to floods
Major headlines
Editor's Pick
  • Chinese Navy soldiers hold an evening party marking the upcoming 62nd National Day aboard Chinese Navy hospital ship "Peace Ark" in the Pacific on Sept. 28, 2011. The Chinese National Day falls on Oct. 1. (Xinhua/Zha Chunming)
  • Photo taken on Sept. 30, 2011 shows the crowd at the plaza of Beijing Railway Station in Beijing, capital of China. The railway transportation witnessed a travel peak with the approach of the seven-day National Day holidays on Friday. (Xinhua)
  • A man wearing high-heel shoes takes part in the 3rd annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, an event when men literally walk in women's shoes to raise awareness about ending violence against women, at Yonge-Dundas Square in Toronto, Canada, Sept. 29, 2011. (Xinhua/Zou Zheng)
  • Photo taken on Sept. 29, 2011 shows a cargo ship in danger on the sea near Zhuhai City, south China's Guangdong Province. Cargo ship Fangzhou 6 of Qingzhou of southwest China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region lost control after water stormed into its cabin due to Typhoon Nesat on the sea near Zhuhai Thursday, leaving 12 crew members in danger. Rescuers rushed to the ship and saved them by using a helicopter. (Xinhua)
  • Actress Gong Li poses for L'Officiel Magazine. (Xinhua Photo)
  • Demonstrators from the Occupy Wall Street campaign hold placards as they march in the financial district of New York September 29, 2011. After hundreds of protesters were denied access to some areas outside the New York Stock Exchange on September 17, demonstrators set up a rag-tag camp three blocks away. Zuccotti Park is a campground festooned with placards and anti-Wall Street slogans. The group is adding complaints of excessive police force against protesters and police treatment of ethnic minorities and Muslims to its grievances list, which includes bank bailouts, foreclosures and high unemployment. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
Hot Forum Discussion