Norwegian men fattest in Europe
Posted by African Press International on April 4, 2008
Published by Korir, api firstname.lastname@example.org source.aftenposteneng
Norway has the highest percentage of overweight men in Europe, according to a new report by the World Health Organizaiton (WHO). The report indicates that more than half of all Norwegian men are too fat.
Fast-food, like fries from McDonalds, should cost even more than they do now, argues an Oslo nutritionist.
PHOTO: R. KARECKAS/AP
The study, reported Friday in newspaper Dagsavisen, examined results from measures taken of body mass in 30 countries. If the so-called “body mass index” is between 25 and 30, the person being measured is regarded as overweight.
If it’s over 30, the person is considered fat.
Less than 30 percent of men measured in Kazakhstan were deemed overweight, while in Norway, more than 50 percent were.
Norwegian women scored better, with around 30 percent falling into the “overweight” category. That compares to a low of 20 percent in Uzbekistan to more than 40 percent in Great Britain.
Experts blame the increasingly widespread consumption of so-called “junk food,” from hamburgers and french fries to potato chips and sweets, especially in Norway.
“It’s well known that there’s been an increase in weight among both Norwegian men and women in recent years,” nutritionist Mette Helvik Morken told Dagsavisen. She worries that this will lead to a jump in health-related problems.
Helvik Morken advocates a typically Norwegian approach to the problem: Impose heavy taxes on food with high fat content.
“People aren’t able to fend off the temptation, and we have too much food available in portions that are too large,” Helvik Morken claimed.
She thinks Norwegian politicians should impose taxes that would at least double the price of potato chips, chocolate, cakes and fast-food.
“Snacks and fast-food should be so much more expensive that people will think twice before buying it,” she argues.
Chocolate and fast food already is much more expensive in Norway than other countries, however, because of special sugar taxes that already exist and allegedly high costs. A standard menu for a cheeseburger, fries and soft drink at Burger King in Oslo, for example, currently costs NOK 79, or about USD 11.
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