A study conducted by researchers at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine have confirmed that at least 17 million people around the world is overweight, with some still being significantly fatter than the others. And it's this "us VS them" mentality that really has researchers concerned.
The team found that, despite accounting for only 6% of the
global population, North America was single-handedly responsible for a
third of the world's obesity. Compare that with Asia: 61% of the global
population, but only 13% of its obesity. In theory, if every other country in the world had the same level of fatness as USA,
it would be like adding an extra billion people to the world's population!
study author Prof. Ian Roberts, the goal of this study is to move away
from the focus on obesity in individuals and instead, get everyone to be concerned with how their collective
girth is contributing towards the bigger issue: lack of resources. Via the BBC:
One of the problems with definitions of obesity is that it fosters a 'them and us' ideal. Actually, we're all getting fatter.
When people think about environmental sustainability, they
immediately focus on population. Actually, when it comes down to it —
it's not how many mouths there are to feed, it's how much flesh there is
on the planet.
The fact is the more you weigh, the more resources you use up in general in order to fill your body's calorie quota. So basically, the fatter you are, the more you tax the planet. So unless we all start doing something about it, it's only a matter of time before we milk this planet dry.