Mexico, second most obese in Latin America


Mexico has become one of the countries with the most obese people in Latin America, as the proportion of overweight people has increased to 24 percent, said Jaime Sepúlveda Amor, coordinator of the National Institute of Health. In a conference on "How is the health of Mexicans", offered at the LVII National Meeting of the Mexican Society of Public Health, he said that obesity has become the silent epidemic in Mexico, since in a decade the percentage of the population suffering from it tripled, going from 9 to 24 percent.

This situation, he added, has also increased the trends of chronic cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, and diabetes in the country. Sepúlveda Amor pointed out that the problem of obesity represents a true health epidemic in Mexico and that this circumstance is present in both men and women of different ages and in all social strata, although with a greater tendency in the north of the country.

Obesity, he said, is fundamentally due to the increase in the consumption of fats; and to the rhythm of modern life, with fast food and sedentary life, without balanced food and lack of physical exercise. With these figures, Mexico is in second place with this type of problem in Latin America, only behind Chile, where the situation is really critical, he explained.

The official called attention to these circumstances, specifying that 2 out of every 4 Mexicans have overweight problems and that women are the ones who most reflect obesity, since 60 percent of the population over 15 years of age suffers from it, compared to men, who only have 40 percent. In addition, he said, overweight is becoming a delicate pattern since 25 percent of the country's child population already suffers from it.

He indicated that while there are 1.2 billion people on the planet suffering from obesity, in Mexico this problem is accentuated since 50 percent of the population already suffers from "fatness" and is not properly attended to, he concluded.