Obesity costs $2 trillion annually

Obesity is not just the cause of a global health crisis. It also causes huge economic casualties. The global obesity epidemic costs the global economy $2 trillion annually in healthcare costs, investments to reduce the impact of unemployment and lost productivity. This is according to the results of a new study published by the McKinsey Global Institute.

Research by the consulting firm McKinsey shows that this number is roughly equal to the gross domestic product of countries such as Italy and Russia. In a ranking of man-made economic burdens, the McKinsey Global Institute puts obesity third at 2.8 percent of global gross domestic product.

In comparison, smoking comes first, costing the world economy $2.1 trillion and accounting for 2.9 percent of global gross domestic product. With the same indicators are the damages from armed conflicts, wars and terrorism. Only after them are the economic costs of illiteracy, climate change, air pollution, drug addiction, traffic accidents, occupational accidents, malnutrition, unsafe sex and poor hygiene.

About 2.1 billion people, or almost a third of the world’s population, were overweight or obese in 2013, according to a study published earlier this year in the medical journal The Lancet. This is a sharp increase from 1980, when there were 857 million obese people in the world.
In the most developed economies, obesity ranks among the top three man-made economic costs. The McKinsey Global Institute estimates that obesity accounts for $663 billion in annual costs in the US and $70 billion in the UK.

Bulgaria is in one of the first places in terms of the number of obese people. Our country is also in sixth place in the EU in terms of the number of overweight children aged 11 to 17. Every third first-grader in our country is overweight, according to the chairman of The Bulgarian Association for the Study of Obesity and Associated Diseases Prof. Svetoslav Khandzhiev. According to him, this is emerging as a global problem.

In the last 30 years, the number of obese people in China has increased by 80 percent. The number of people with obesity in the USA and Brazil is also growing every day. Only Denmark has managed to keep the number of obese people at the same level for the last 10 years.

In addition to being a cosmetic problem and having a heavy effect on the economy, obesity is also the cause of many diseases such as high blood pressure, diabetes, joint diseases. Nearly 500,000 cases of cancer a year are in people who are overweight, with the problem particularly severe in North America, the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer reported.

According to a study published in The Lancet Oncology journal, excess weight is a major risk factor for cancer, responsible for nearly half a million, or 3.1 percent, of new cases of cancer per year. Obesity increases the risk of colon, esophageal, rectal, pancreatic, kidney, gallbladder, and ovarian, endometrial, and postmenopausal breast cancers.

According to the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer, cancer problems in women are much more likely to be caused by obesity than in men. 10 percent of new cases of postmenopausal breast cancer could be prevented if women maintained a normal weight.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button