This was pointed out by the European Regional Office of the World Health Organization (WHO) on Wednesday at the establishment of a political network for the prevention of obesity among children in Zagreb. Data like this paints an alarming picture – and the number of children who are overweight or obese (adiposity) is expected to continue to rise.
Half of adults are overweight
The WHO Europe, which is actually based in Copenhagen, Denmark, referred, among other things, to the European Obesity Report 2022, which the organization published a good year ago. According to this, more than half of the adults in Europe are overweight. It is 29 percent for boys aged seven to nine years and 27 percent for girls of the same age.
People with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of more than 30 are considered obese, overweight begins with a BMI of over 25. The BMI is calculated from height and weight.
Policy recommendations against obesity
The wives of 16 European heads of state and government now want to counteract the problem under the leadership of Croatian First Lady Sanja Music-Milanovic. They adopted a statement in Zagreb on Wednesday that provides policy recommendations to reverse the rapid rise in childhood obesity.
“Our children are increasingly growing up in environments that make it very difficult for them to eat well and be active. This is a root cause of the obesity epidemic,” said WHO Regional Director Hans Kluge. Societies and countries have so far failed to reverse the rising rates. The Zagreb Declaration is an important first step in this regard.