Fewer People Try to Lose Weight as Obesity Rises

  • By Hong Jun-ki

    April 01, 2019 09:01

    Despite greater awareness of health issues, more people are becoming obese and fewer are trying to lose weight.

    According to the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week, the obesity rate in a study of 230,000 adults was 31.8 percent in 2018, up 3.2 percent from the year before.

    A body mass index of 25 to 29.9 is considered overweight and of 30 or over obese.

    Although there is growing concern about obesity, which can cause various chronic illnesses such as diabetes, obesity has gone up by 10 percent in the last decade. Overeating and lack of exercise from an early age seem to be the main factors.

    Yet fewer people are trying to manage their weight. The proportion of people who went on a diet to lose weight last year was 58.9 percent, down from 62.8 percent from 2017. Those who said they check nutrition facts before buying processed food also dropped from 27.2 percent to 25.6 percent.

    Smoking, which was on a generally downward trend since the study began in 2008 at around 26 percent, stalled last year at 21.7 percent.

    The proportion of people who tried to quit smoking dropped from 27.2 percent in 2017 to 22.8 percent in 2018. The main reason seems to be the increasing use of e-cigarettes.

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