40% of Catalans are overweight and 16.5% are obese

Data released by the Department of Health shows that 40% of Catalans are overweight and 16.5% are obese. Marina Geli, the Catalan Minister for Health, is optimistic about health in Catalonia, stating that people are “changing their tendencies” and adopting healthier lifestyles.


September 6, 2010 11:06 PM

Barcelona (ACN).- 40% of Catalans are overweight and 16.5% are obese. Among minors between 4 and 14 years old, 13% are overweight and 6% are obese. The Catalan Minister for Health, Marina Geli, released this data during her presentation of a new guide for nutritional health called ‘Feed your health’. Geli said that being overweight is an epidemic provoked by high calorie foods and an excess in protein. The Minister suggested that the next health survey, which is scheduled to be released at the beginning of 2011, would show improvements. In this sense, she assured that people are more and more conscious of the necessity to take care of themselves and eat well.

The data was released 3 days after the Spanish Parliament gave the green light to a law project that will regulate what schools may sell and advertise if they do not comply with the required nutritional standards. Marina Geli stated that the Catalan Government already asked that schools remove high calorie foods from their vending machines in 2007. According to Geli, all elementary schools have removed the items and only 19% of high schools still have them. For this reason, she said that the new law would not change much in Catalonia.

Optimism in the face of 2011

The Minister predicts improvement for the new public health report that is scheduled for released at the beginning of 2011. The report that is published every 4 years gives information on adult and child obesity in the country. Geli showed optimism and said that the data continues to be more positive because people are “changing their tendencies” and becoming more responsible for taking care of themselves and eating better. “You only have to look at the number of people who are going to the gym now”, she says.

‘Feed your health’

The new guide entitled 'Alimenta la teva salut'  (Feed your health) will be distributed with the 50th edition of the magazine ‘Fer Salut’ (Make health) by the Associació Catalana d'Entitats de Base Associativa (ACEBA). It may also be viewed online on the Catalan Heath Ministry's website. The guide will offer recipes and advice based on the age and health of the person.