One in seven people in France – or 14.5% of the population – is obese, according to a new report published this week. In fact, France has seen one of the largest increases in obesity rates in the developed world.
The numbers of overweight people in the country has jumped by three percentage points in the last year alone, according to the World Health Organisation. It findings confirm those of other recent studies.
Blame for the increase in obesity levels is being levelled at France’s sluggish economy, with families switching to cheaper, less healthy, processed food – purely on the basis of price.
Families in the more industrial north of the country have been hit harder than those in the south.
The news comes as no real surprise to health experts in Paris. They have been campaigning for the introduction of colour-coded food labelling similar to the kind we have in the UK.
French eating habits have changed dramatically in the past ten years, and fast food sales have ballooned – having overtaken those of meals from more traditional restaurants.
The English-speaking world, however, has nothing to gloat about. Obesity levels stand at 24.7% in the UK, 28.3% in Australia and – topping the global scales – a whopping 35.3% in the US.