Wednesday, November 29, 2023 | 00:30 WIB

Let’s talk about obesity


Jakarta, IO – World Obesity Day (WOD), commemorated every year on 4 March, is meant to increase awareness and concern among the global community of the importance of preventing and treating obesity. The global theme for WOD 2023 is “Changing Perspectives: Let’s Talk About Obesity”, while the national theme is “Recognize, Prevent, and Mitigate Obesity for a Healthier, More Productive Life”. 

“Let’s Talk About Obesity” means “having a meaningful talk and sharing real experiences to help people acknowledge the multiple roots and dimensions of obesity, and thus inspiring them to take effective action, for the sake of better health”. 

Obesity is a global issue, one that affects no fewer than two billion people worldwide, including Indonesia, threatening their safety and health. “We predict that 1 out of 5 women and 1 out of 7 men will live with obesity by 2030. That’s equal to more than one billion people worldwide. The global prevalence of obesity is higher among women than men, with the highest proportions found in developing countries. Obesity is a huge risk factor for incommunicable diseases like diabetes mellitus, heart troubles, cancer, hypertension, and both metabolic and non-metabolic illnesses. It is a contributory cause of death in cardiovascular disease (5.87% of all cases), and diabetes and kidney problems (1.84%),” reported RI Ministry of Health’s Director General of the Prevention and Control of Diseases, Dr. dr. Maxi Rein Rondonuwu, DHSM, MARS, in the “World Obesity Day 2023 Commemoration” media meet on Monday (06/03/2023). 

Within the past 10 years, Indonesia suffered a significant increase in the prevalence of obesity, i.e., from 10.5% in 2007 to 21.8% in 2018. “Obesity is more than a physical health issue: it also affects our socio-economic condition. There are three health expenses relating to obesity: (1) direct costs relating to obesity treatment, (2) costs due to obesity-related social and personal losses (opportunity cost), and (3) indirect costs because of diminished productivity. This combination means that the State must bear even higher health treatment costs. Therefore, efforts to prevent and control obesity will be more cost effective than treatment efforts – both at personal and governmental level,” Dr. Maxi said. 


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