Study: Philippines among countries with most underweight people
Alixandra Caole Vila ( - April 4, 2016 - 9:48pm

MANILA, Philippine — A study published in The Lancet, reveals that the Philippines is among the countris with the highest rate of underweight men and women.

Analyzing statistical data from 1975 to 2014, the study revealed that Philippines ranked ninth in terms of underweight men (3.6 million) and eighth in terms of underweight women (4.4 million), placing a spot higher than Ethiopia, Nigeria and Brazil.

It also found out that the number of underweight persons worldwide went from 330 million in 1975 to 462 million in 2014, and most cases are found in world's poorest regions, especially in south Asia.

Topping the list of countries with the most underweight population is India, China, Indonesia and Bangladesh.

Using statistical methods, the study analyzed the BMI trends of adults aged 18 years and older from in 200 countries and territories, organized in 21 regions.

The study lead by Professor Majid Ezzati of the School of Public Health at the Imperial College London also looked at the prevalence of obesity worldwide, citing that, the probability of meeting the global obesity target is virtually zero.

Nutritional deficiency has been a problem in the Philippines. According to Lawrence Haddad, nutrition expert and lead author of the 2015 Global Nutrition Report, the country is lagging behind other poor countries in addressing malnutrition, not only in adults but children as well.

Citing the 2013 Food and Nutrition Research Institute’s National Nutrition Survey, which showed that 19.9 percent of children under five years are underweight, 30.3 percent stunted and 7.9 percent wasted, Sen. Juan Edgardo Angara, last year, has filed a resolution to determine how to improve the nutritional wellbeing of Filipinos.

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