dimanche 11 mars 2018


I received this newspaper clip from Malaysia this morning. A legislator was in fact praising the Obesity epidemic in the country saying it shows that the country is prosperous compared to the neighbours. Weird logic! 

Malaysian parliament must be fun to watch if this is the kind of entertainment they provide. I was able to track down the video of this illustrious gent (who himself is obese) talking to an empty chamber of parliament (many empty seats, were the Senators out to exercise or eat?)
Here is the video.
You make up your own mind.
Is this evidence based science? or 
an ignorant populist blurting out his mind to an empty parliament ?

Malaysia is one of the fattest countries in Asia and also has the highest rate of Type 2 Diabetes as well as the highest rate of Childhood obesity

“Tackling obesity in ASEAN – Prevalence, impact, and guidance on interventions”, the report calls for more concerted efforts by health authorities to tackle the problem of obesity so as to avoid strains on healthcare systems.

Impact and economic cost of obesity

Direct and indirect costs associated with obesity can amount to as much as US$10billion in the six countries covered in the report. This is due to a spike in related non-communicable diseases like type 2 diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and stroke, as well as loss of productivity arising from illness and poor health.

Among the six countries, Malaysia and Indonesia are experiencing the highest overall costs of obesity in 2016, equivalent to between 10 per cent and 19 per cent, and 8 per cent and 16 per cent of national healthcare spending, or US$1-2billion and US$2-4billion respectively. Singapore incurs the third highest costs (direct and indirect costs arising from obesity) equivalent to between 3 per cent and 10 per cent of national healthcare spending, or US$0.4-1billion.

The report also reveals that problems associated with obesity are resulting in the loss of four to nine years of productive (working) life on average, due to absenteeism/presenteeism-related productivity losses and early death or early retirement ahead of the legal retirement age.

“Data on obesity prevalence in the region is uneven and often absent across the ASEAN region. This constrains policy-making, which can in turn lead to certain untargeted programmes or interventions. This study is the first time such a detailed analysis on the impact of obesity has been carried out. We hope it will help deepen the understanding of Southeast Asia’s obesity threat,” said EIU’s Global Chief Economist, Dr Simon Baptist, who led the report.

The report shows that obesity rates vary widely, depending on ethnic, genetic, regional and economic differences, and underscores the need for carefully tailored obesity prevention strategies, rather than a one-size-fits-all approach. Dr Baptist added, “Taking time to identify at-risk communities can enable the development of smarter policies and more targeted interventions.”