Turkey the most obese country in Europe

WHO obesity research, conducted in 51 countries, reveals that 32.1% of Turks are obese.

Obesity is one of the greatest health challenges of the 21st century. Its prevalence has tripled in many countries of the WHO European Region since the 1980s, and the numbers of those affected continue to rise at an alarming rate.

The World Health Organization obesity research, conducted in 51 countries, reveals that 32.1% Turkish people are obese. The research, based on the height and weight, includes the ranking of the 51 European and Central Asian countries. Turkey is 27th in the world rating, followed by Malta and the UK. Turkey has become the most obese country in Europe.

In addition to causing various physical disabilities and psychological problems, excess weight drastically increases a person’s risk of developing a number of non-communicable diseases, including cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes.

The risk of developing more than one of these diseases (co-morbidity) also rises with increasing body weight. Obesity is already responsible for 2–8% of health costs and 10–13% of deaths in different parts of the region.

Both societies and governments need to act to curb the epidemic. National policies should encourage and provide opportunities for greater physical activity, and improve the affordability, availability and accessibility of healthy foods. They should also encourage the involvement of different government sectors, civil society, the private sector and other stakeholders.