Friday, 11 January 2013

A reminder that we aren't getting fatter...


I've said this before but worth saying again - we aren't getting fatter:

Whilst child obesity is a major concern for parents, the rate of child obesity has not inexorably risen. According to the Health and Social Care Information Centre, amongst boys between the ages of 2 and 15, the proportion classed as obese increased from 11.1% in 1995 to 19.4% in 2004, but then ebbed to 17.1% in 2011. 12.2% of girls in the same group were obese in 1995; this rate peaked in 2005 at 18.8%, but steadily decreased to 14.8% in 2010. 

Whatever it is that we're doing already appears to be working. Perhaps we should just carry on as we are - without more bans, controls and other finger-wagging from New Puritans?


1 comment:

Anonymous said...


Old Definition: Blood sugar > 140 mg/dl
People under old definition: 11.7 million
New Definition: Blood sugar > 126 mg/dl
People added under new definition: 1.7 million
Percent increase: 15%

The definition was changed in 1997 by the American Diabetes Association and WHO Expert Committee on the Diagnosis and Classification of Diabetes Mellitus.


High blood pressure is reported as two numbers, systolic or peak pressure and diastolic pressure when heart is at rest) in mm Hg.

Old Definition: cutoff Blood Pressure > 160/100
People under old definition: 38.7 million
New Definition: Blood Pressure > 140/90
People added under new definition: 13.5 million
Percent Increase: 35%

The definition was changed in 1997 by U.S. Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure.

Prehypertension, a new category created in 2003: blood pressure from 120/80 to 138/89 includes 45 million additional people! If one includes this category, we have a grand total of 97.2 million total numbers of hypertensives and prehypertensives (whatever that is).

High (Total) Cholesterol:

Old Definition: Cholesterol > 240 mg/dl total cholesterol
People under old definition: 49.5 million
New Definition: Cholesterol > 200 mg/dl total cholesterol
People added under new definition: 42.6 million
Percent increase: 86%

The definition was changed in 1998 by U.S. Air Force/Texas Coronary Atherosclerosis Prevention Study.


Body Mass Index (BMI) is defined as the ratio of weight (in kg) to height (in meters) squared and is an inexact measure of body fat, though it supposedly establishes cutoff points of normal weight, overweight, and obesity.

Old definition: BMI > 28 (men), BMI > 27 (women)
People under old definition: 70.6 million
New definition: BMI > 25
People added under new definition: 30.5 million
Percent Increase: 43%

The definition was changed in 1998 by U.S. National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute.

"The new definitions ultimately label 75 percent of the adult U.S. population as diseased," conclude the two researchers.