America, land of the (exercise) free, is no longer that world’s fattest major country on Earth.
Mexico, whose residents have clearly been spending too much time emulating their northern neighbors, are the new calorie kings, according to a United Nations report.
Easier to digest than a UN document is the article “How Mexico got so fat,” on GlobalPost.com, which blames the increased girth on the unhealthy combo of rising incomes and rampant consumption.
Though almost 50 percent of Mexico’s population is considered poor, “it is the malnourished that are becoming obese,” says one expert.
About 70 percent of Mexican adults are considered overweight; 32.8 percent are obese. The U.S. huffs and puffs its way to second place with a 31.8 percent obesity rate.
Curiously, the world’s smallest nations have the largest residents. The Cook (with Lard) Islands in the South Pacific house but 10,000 humans, but more than 60 percent of them are obese, according to the UN report. More island fatties can be found on Tonga, Samoa and Nauru.
The thinnest developed country? Maybe Japan, where only 4.5 percent are considered obese. Western Europe does well also, with rates generally under 20 percent.
Less than a month ago, the American Medical Association classified obesity as a disease.
Note: The UN report seems to use 2008 data, so it does not include the Double Quarter Pounder with Cheese I had for lunch.