Ireland to tackle obesity


The group SafeFood who are responsible for the promotion of food safety in Ireland have launched a new initiative, to make people aware of their weight and to tackle the growing problem of obesity

. Safefood is warning that while 66% of people in Ireland are overweight , only 38% actually realise it. The group wants people to ‘stop the spread’ by measuring their waist size to become aware if they’re headded for dangerous territory.Their research shows that a waist size of greater than 32 inches for women and 37 inches for men could indicate that those are one of the people Safefood says are “in denial” about their weight.

The website states that 2 out of 3 people in Ireland are overweight and so have launched the “Stop the Spread” campaign. SafeFood will make 250,000 tape measures free and easily available to the population through chemists and pharmacies over the coming months  with the hope that people will step up, find out their waist size, realise that they are overweight and do something to combat obesity.The campaign is comprised of television and radio advertising as well as a campaign ‘pledge’ website. Users can log onto the website, learn how to measure their waist correctly and take one of five campaign pledges if they are carrying excess weight, and share those pledges with friends and family through social media channels like Facebook.

Safefood is asking adults on the island of Ireland to find out what their waist size is. Having a waist size greater than 32 inches for a woman or 37 inches for a man is a clear indication that a person is carrying excess weight.

The “Stop the Spread” campaign is a two-year, all island initiative by safefood and comprises television and radio advertising as well as a campaign ‘pledge’. The campaign is also supported by pharmacies and chemists across the island of Ireland where consumers can pick up one of 250,000 free measuring tapes from next week.

The campaign also addresses what is called the “social contagion effect”, where the chances of being obese are much more likely in a social circle either within a family or a network of friends. The facts are laid out below:

  • Only 38% of adults believe they are overweight
  • 66% of the Irish
  • 81% of men believe their waist size is within the “normal” range
  • Normal waist range for woman is 32 inches
  • Normal waist range for men is 37 inches
  • Research has shown that a person’s chances of becoming obese increased by 57% if they had a friend who became obese. If one spouse is obese, the likelihood that the other spouse could be obese increases by 37%

A fantastic initiative in my opinion. It upsets me to see obese children, every child should take part in some element of sport to prevent obesity.It’s worrying that obesity is on the rise so rapidly.  It’s also sad to think that some people just aren’t as educated to understand obesity and the effects it can have on our bodies from diabetes to heart conditions to some cancers.I strongly believe that education about obesity is a must, to everyone.

Read more about the Stop the Spread campaign here and here.

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