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Alarm! Are you overweight?
The Lancet, the world's leading medical journal, found that China has the largest obese population in the world. It was only second to America in the number of severely obese males and females.


China has 43.2 million obese males and 46.4 million females, accounting for 16.3 and 12.4 percent of the world's total.

It was only second to America in the number of severely obese males and females, a big increase from 1975 when the number only ranked 60th (male) and 40th (female) worldwide.

Northern China was the most troubled area, with Guangdong province rated as having a medium level of obesity.

The Chinese Resident's Chronic Disease and Nutrition Report 2015 also pointed out that 30.1 percent of the Chinese adults were overweight and 11.9 percent were obese.

What's the standard for obesity?

Internationally, the body mass index (BMI) is used as a screening tool to indicate whether a person is underweight, overweight, obese or has a healthy weight for their height. It is a measure of body fat based on a person's weight in relation to his height.

BMI=weight (kg)/height (m) 2 or weight (lb)/height (in)2 * 703

Why are people getting fat?

Are they infected by others?

Professor Nicholas Christakis from Harvard Medical School observed 12,067 respondents for 32 years and found that getting fat could be "contagious." Once a person gets overweight, the people around him/her are two times more likely to gain weight too.

Eating to relax?

Male obesity

Whether caused by special constitutions or bad lifestyles, obesity increasingly has become a concern in modern society. Among the obese, males are especially worrying.

“The obesity rate of male has remained stubbornly high in recent years. Men seem to be more tolerant with their expanding waistlines, while women are paying more and more attention to keeping fit.”— Zheng Yuhong, Second Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical University

Most obese males in China suffer from central obesity, characterized by the so-called "pot belly." "It often comes with higher risks of getting diabetes, hypertension, abnormal blood lipids and cardiovascular diseases," said Zheng. A research in Oxford University also found that every five-point increase in BMI would mean 30 percent increase in early death.

Central obesity, or belly fat, measured by waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) and waist circumference (WC):

WHR ≥ 0.9, or WC ≥ 102cm (40 inches) for males;

WHR ≥ 0.85, or WC ≥ for 88cm (35 inches) females.

The healthy waistlines for Chinese males and females are about and less than 85cm and 80cm respectively.

Risks imposed by central obesity

How do you like obese people?

Obesity is not only a threat to health, but also a stumbling block towards a quality life. To learn about citizens' opinions about obese people, Jinan University Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery Center has interviewed 500 people in the hospital and at multiple metro exits. It turned out life was not as easy as it should be for obese people.

“The obese are faced with discrimination both in relationships and job hunting. Many fail to find a girl/boyfriend. Even married, they have a divorce rate about three times higher than the average.” — Professor Wang Cunchuan, Jinan University Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery Center

How to lose weight?

To lead a healthy and quality life, obesity must be tackled with determination and persistence.

Here are some tips for losing weight.

1. Develop a healthy eating plan that gives you the nutrition you need but not too much daily calorie. The plan should emphasize vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat dairy products and include lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts.

2. Have less processed food. For example, fruits are better than bottles of juice sold in supermarkets. Saturated and trans fats, sodium, and added sugars should be avoided. 

3. Have portion control. Don’t eat when you are not hungry.

4. Less stress and more sleep.

5. Whatever exercise is helpful. Less sedentary time and more exercise.

Obese people can also consult doctors for professional advice in losing weight. Those who have a BMI of 32.5 or above are advised to seek medical help if none of the ways recommended above works.

Editor:Joanna You
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