Unhealthy Britain is the most obese country in Europe

Britain is one of the most unhealthy countries in Europe and has the highest level of obesity, an influential health study has shown.

The worst place is the West Midlands where 2million adults, or 29 per cent, are obese. The North East is a close second.

That is double the EU average of 14 per cent, the Association of Public Health Observatories revealed.

Britain also has one of the highest levels of teenage pregnancy among the 27 countries studied, with the North East having the highest level in the UK.

The rate of cancer deaths in the south-east is the highest in Britain at 185 per 100,000, followed by Scotland at 179 per 100,000.

But there is some good news – the level of adults who smoke is lower than many other countries.

Professor John Wilkinson, the report’s author, said: ‘For some cases the UK is not doing very well. The obvious one is obesity where we are at the top of the league.

The fine grading of the report shows that in areas where we think we are doing better in terms of obesity, such as the South East region, we are still actually far behind areas such as Scandinavia.

The findings demonstrate that even in parts of the UK where we think we are doing quite well there’s a long way to go.’


Original article published in Metro: 15/12/2010