According to the 2016 Global Nutrition Report, investigating 129 countries, one in three people suffers from malnutrition. Traditionally, malnutrition has been associated with starving children, stunted growth, and rising rates of infections. These continue to be major problems but significant progress has been achieved in this area. Instead, the authors of the report highlight the “staggering global challenge” rising obesity levels pose. Professor Corinna Hawkes, who co-chaired the study, stated that the research redefines what the world understands as being malnourished. The number of children under five who are overweight is rapidly approaching the number who are underweight. Yet, while many countries are on course to meet their targets to reduce stunted growth and the number of underweight children, few are making progress on tackling obesity and its associated illnesses such as cardiovascular diseases.
After reading the Global Nutrition Report, there can be no doubt in regard to the urgency of tackling rising obesity levels globally. For further information on the obesity epidemic, please also (re)read the NCDAPA article: Final report of the Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity: Asia most affected by global epidemic
For more information on the 2016 Global Nutrition Report please see: BBC – Obesity boom “fuelling rise in malnutrition”