[ Back to EurekAlert! ] Public release date: 14-Dec-2009
[ | E-mail Share Share ]

Contact: Graeme Baldwin
graeme.baldwin@biomedcentral.com
44-203-192-2165
BioMed Central

Obesity epidemic taking root in Africa

The urban poor in sub-Saharan Africa are the latest victims of the obesity epidemic. Researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Public Health claim that overweight and obesity are on the increase among this group.

Abdhalah Ziraba worked with a team of researchers from the African Population and Health Research Center, Nairobi, Kenya, who used data from seven African countries to investigate changes in body mass index (BMI) between early 1990s and early 2000s. He said, "Despite being the least urbanized continent, Africa's population is becoming increasingly urban and its cities are growing at unprecedented rates. In spite of rampant poverty in urban areas, access to cheap foods with a high content of fat and sugar is commonplace".

The researchers found that the number of people overweight/obese increased by nearly 35% during the study period. Those of higher socio-economic status were more likely to be overweight or obese, but the rate of increase in obesity was higher in the poor group. According to Ziraba, "Given the chronic nature of most diseases associated with obesity and by extension the huge cost of treatment, the prospects look grim for the already under-funded and ill-equipped African health care systems unless urgent action is taken".

###

Notes to Editors:

1. Overweight and obesity in urban Africa: A problem of the rich or the poor?
Abdhalah K Ziraba, Jean C Fotso and Rhoune Ochako
BMC Public Health (in press)

During embargo, article available here: http://www.biomedcentral.com/imedia/1517039011252115_article.pdf?random=222030

After the embargo, article available at journal website: http://www.biomedcentral.com/bmcpublichealth/

Please name the journal in any story you write. If you are writing for the web, please link to the article. All articles are available free of charge, according to BioMed Central's open access policy.

Article citation and URL available on request at press@biomedcentral.com on the day of publication

2. BMC Public Health (http://www.biomedcentral.com/bmcpublichealth/) is an open access journal publishing original peer-reviewed research articles in the epidemiology of disease and the understanding of all aspects of public health. The journal has a special focus on the social determinants of health, the environmental, behavioral, and occupational correlates of health and disease, and the impact of health policies, practices and interventions on the community. BMC Public Health (ISSN 1471-2458) is indexed/tracked/covered by PubMed, MEDLINE, CAS, EMBASE, Scopus, Current Contents, FSTA, Thomson Reuters (ISI) and Google Scholar.

3. BioMed Central (http://www.biomedcentral.com/) is an STM (Science, Technology and Medicine) publisher which has pioneered the open access publishing model. All peer-reviewed research articles published by BioMed Central are made immediately and freely accessible online, and are licensed to allow redistribution and reuse. BioMed Central is part of Springer Science+Business Media, a leading global publisher in the STM sector.



[ Back to EurekAlert! ] [ | E-mail Share Share ]

 


AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert! system.