Regional waistlines concerning on World Obesity Day

Ashwini SaseedaranSouth Western Times

CONCERNING statistics revealed by the Heart Foundation yesterday announced regional waistlines are growing at double the rate of obesity found in inner Perth.

Today being World Obesity Day, all governments, health service providers, insurers and charities were called upon by LiveLighter to help put an end to obesity by seriously investing in prevention, early detection, intervention and treatment.

Cancer Council WA’s South West Support Centre regional education officer Shenae Norris said focussing on ending obesity would go a long way.

“It would help put an end to heart disease and the years of healthy life people lose to disability or an early death,” Ms Norris said.

The Heart Foundation’s Heart Maps reported obesity rates in inner Perth was sitting at 15 per cent while Bunbury was lounging at a worrying 29 per cent alongside Mandurah at 28 per cent and the Wheatbelt region at 30 per cent.

Linked to death and disability from health issues such as heart disease, fatty liver disease, diabetes and cancer, those suffering from obesity are 2.5 times more likely to die than the most advantaged people.

However, Ms Norris said obesity and heart disease, apart from being a personal liability, was also a responsibility of governments and health organisations.

“There is a multi-billion dollar junk food industry shamelessly and mercilessly marketing and selling junk food on every corner without a thought given to the disability and diseases they are perpetuating,” she said.

“Junk food and drink giants are making a profit from obesity while thousands of West Australians are left with a range of diseases including the number one killer of heart disease.”

LiveLighter will be calling for legislation to restrict marketing of unhealthy food and drink on free to air television and on all publicly owned assets to tackle the heart of the issue.

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