THAILAND – The Public Health Ministry has made known that around 16 million people in Thailand are considered overweight and the figure is set to rise.
The ministry said the risk for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) would continue to rise, which would also contribute to an increase a person’s body mass index (BMI). Obesity is a major risk for diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and a number of cancers.
In addition, obesity has been linked to an early onset of osteoarthritis and other joint diseases, as it leads to degeneration of the articular cartilage and bones. Osteoarthritis is usually a prevalent symptomatic health problem for older individuals.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), around 3.4 million adults die each year as a result of being overweight or obese. By next year, 2.3 billion people around the world will become overweight. In Thailand, there are 11.3 million obese women, or twice as many as obese men.
The ministry has urged members of the public to increase the consumption of fruit and vegetables, as well as engaging in regular physical activity. In 2011, it was found that only 15 million Thai people aged 11 and over exercise or play sports, which accounts for only 26 percent of the overall population.
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