Six out of ten Brazilians are overweight (Freepik)
There are many estimates that suggest that Brazil will enter the next decade with around 30% of its adult population consisting of obese people.s
Obesity has increased in Brazil. One of the latest surveys on the incidence of the disease was conducted in 2020, by the Monitoring Survey of Risk and Protective Factors for Chronic Diseases by Telephone Survey (Vigitel). The results of the study show that the country already has 20.3% of its adult population composed of obese people. This means that one in five Brazilians has a body mass index (BMI) equal to or greater than 30.
Compared to the numbers in 2006, the number of obese adults grew 72%. But among children and teenagers, the alert is already on. Information from the Ministry of Health and the Pan American Health Organization indicates that 12.9% of children between the ages of 5 and 9 are obese, while among adolescents aged 12 to 17 years, this percentage is 7%.
“The figures are worrying, but they are certainly no longer real. From 2020, we faced a pandemic that brought many consequences, among them the increase in obesity as a result of a profusion of cases of anxiety and the period itself at home there because of isolation “, explains the bariatric surgeon and digestive system, and director of Minas Gerais Obesity Institute (IMO), Dr. Leonardo Salles.
The Obesity Map, which calculates obesity rates in Brazilian capitals, shows that Belo Horizonte occupies an intermediate position. Data Vigitel 2019 indicates that 20.7% of men are obese, while the percentage of women is 19.2%. With the caveat: the numbers before the pandemic. The capital of Minas Gerais is still under Rio Branco (AC), where 23.3% and 23.4% of men and women, respectively, have a BMI of at least 30. On the other hand, the population of obese men considerably exceeds those in number. observed in Vitória (ES), where “only” 16% meet these conditions. Already between the women of the two capitals, there is a technical tie.
“It is important to understand where Belo Horizonte is in this national scenario, but it is more necessary to focus on the future. There are many estimates that suggest that Brazil will enter the next decade with about 30% of its adult population composed of obese people “, says the IMO doctor. “This could cause a collapse of public health and simply burst cases they are in heart trouble in the country in a few years”, he added.
According to him, it is necessary to adopt measures to fight and prevent obesity. He considers the intragastric balloon, for example, a method that combines efficiency and overcomes the resistance of those who cannot fit in a strict change of habits. “Treatment in the balloon, together with the multidisciplinary team, helps in the fight against obesity. He treats the weight, while the team composed of psychologists, nutritionists, psychiatrists and endocrinologists, among other professionals, takes care of the mechanical aspects that interfere with the patient’s weight. With the help of a professional, we can beat obesity in a big way “, he said.