What is obesity - epidemiology

Published on January 31, 2016   12 min

Other Talks in the Series: Obesity: Science, Medicine and Society

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Hello, everybody, and welcome to this course entitled Obesity, Science, Medicine, and Society. I'm Alexandra Blakemore, I'm Professor of Molecular Genetics at Imperial College, London and I've put together this course with my colleague Dr. Andrew Walley from St. George's Medical School, London. We've worked together for quite a long time, mostly on the genetics of obesity, but also a little bit on physiology. And we hope that we've been able to put together a series of lectures that you'll find interesting and stimulating on this complex subject.
This lecture is intended as a general overview of the topic of obesity just to ground you in the subjects. When you come to the different lectures that you're going to have during the course, you can integrate them together and see how they fit into the whole academic subject of obesity. So we'll be talking about the rising prevalence of obesity all around the world and where it's most of a problem and what kind of people are most affected. Why is it a problem? What are the consequences of obesity? How do we go about defining who is obese and who isn't? Who's at greatest risk? Why are they at risk? What causes the obesity? And what can we do to combat the problem?
The prevalence of obesity is rising throughout the world and it's been described as a global epidemic. The World Health Organization estimates that in 2014, nearly 40 percent of adults in the world were overweight and 13 percent were obese. That means that more than 2 billion adults worldwide are overweight and half a billion are obese.