Data and facts on obesity in Australia

Facts and data on obesity in Australia

Approximately 25% of Australian children are overweight, or are diagnosed with obesity. The rate of obesity is significantly higher among adult Australians and is one of the highest in the world.

The number of obese men and women is about the same in Australia, but the rate of obesity among women is lower than among men.

  • About 25% of Australian women are overweight and about 17% of women suffer from obesity.
  • More than 40% of Australian men are overweight and about 18% of men suffer from obesity.

The rate of obesity among older Australians is substantially higher than among Australian men and women of mature age.

  • Approximately 40% of elderly men aged 65 years and over are diagnosed with class 1, 2 or 3 obesity.
  • The rate of obesity among older women varies from 10 to 23%. The lowest rate of obesity is observed in women older than 75 years.

To determine the severity of obesity, Australian doctors use body mass index (BMI). You can determine BMI by mathematical calculations or online calculator.

In BMI of 18.4 and lower – anorexia is diagnosed
In BMI of 18.5 to 24.99 – normal weight
In BMI of 25 to 29.99 – overweight is diagnosed
In BMI of 30 to 34.9 – class 1 obesity is diagnosed
In BMI of 35 to 39.9 – class 2 obesity is diagnosed
In BMI of 40 and higher – class 3 obesity is diagnosed

Australian doctors can determine not only the class of obesity, but also its type. There are abdominal and central types of obesity.

Abdominal obesity promotes the development of type 2 diabetes, cancer diseases and cardiovascular pathologies.
Central obesity promotes the development of metabolic syndrome and other types of metabolic disorders.

The main causes of obesity in adult Australians

  • Energy imbalance
  • Genetic predisposition
  • Low level of physical activity
  • Prevalence of fast food in the daily diet

The main causes of obesity in Australian young children

  • Low birth weight
  • Artificial feeding
  • Poor prenatal nutrition

Potential risks of obesity

  • Sleep apnea, daytime sleepiness
  • Type 2 diabetes (including insulin-resistance)
  • Cardiovascular diseases (including atherosclerosis, ischemia)
  • Cerebrovascular events (including stroke)
  • Dyslipidemia (including hypercholesterolemia)
  • Hypertension (including uncontrolled)
  • Diseases of the musculoskeletal system
  • Diseases of the gallbladder
  • Gout, arthritis, hyperuricemia
  • Chronic fatigue, weakness
  • Respiratory Diseases
  • Psychiatric disorders
  • Reproductive disorders
  • Gastrointestinal diseases (including colon cancer)
  • Eye diseases (including cataracts, glaucoma)

The higher the person’s body weight, the higher the risk of developing these diseases. Obese people should remember that weight loss just by 5-10 pounds helps to reduce the risk of potentially dangerous diseases.