Combating the obesity epidemic: cultural problems demand cultural solutions
Health problems related to excessive weight or obesity have acquired great importance in modern developed society. Although estimates vary it is apparent that the scope of these problems is vast. Obesity is now a leading cause of preventable deaths, with more than 400 000 such deaths occurring yearly in the USA alone. In Australia the incidence of obesity is increasing rapidly. Nearly two-thirds of people are overweight and nearly one-third obese: this amounts to approximately 9 million people over the age of 18 who are overweight and approximately 3.3 million who are obese.