Which are the 10 thinnest countries in Europe?
As obesity is becoming a huge problem in the world, promoting healthy lifestyle is becoming more and more important mission for all of us. The crucial factors for fighting this problem are involvement in healthy lifestyle promoting, which includes less salt, fat, and sugar in foods, drinking and smoking less, and getting involved in a regular physical activity. On the other hand, the thinnest population doesn’t necessarily reflect the good health status of the population, since reasons for it might be malnutrition for example which are consequences of poverty. Nevertheless, since Europe does not have these kinds of problems, thinnest countries in Europe most probably reflect people’s involvement and awareness of what a healthy lifestyle is.
As for the Most Obese Countries in Europe, we have used the same parameter for determining countries for our list of thinnest countries in Europe – BMI (body mass index). Except for the obesity we have used the percentage of the population with BMI over 30. In this case, we used the data on average BMI value, for both sexes and for ages over 18. The main source of data comes from the World Health Organization’s Global Status Report on noncommunicable diseases for 2014.
BMI is a generalizing measure that tends to illustrate the amount of fat in the body through mass and height of a person. It also tends to misrepresent the real state of fat in the body, since it uses two different proportions – mass and length (height), where weight represents both muscle and fat tissues. BMI is different for men and women, for different ages, and it is measured different for children. That is why we have chosen population over 18 years of age.
According to BMI values, there are 4 main categories which somewhat illustrate the amount of fat: underweight (BMI ˂ 18.5), normal weight (BMI 18.5-24.9), overweight (25.0-29.9) and obese (BMI ≥ 30). You might notice that all of the countries on our list have BMI higher than 25. That is because the figure represents mean value for both men and women for the whole adult population, it does not necessarily mean that population itself is overweight (plus having in mind different muscle/fat proportions in people).
Factors that influence BMI and healthy lifestyle which make a population thin and fit are nutrition and physical exercise in the first place. Some of the examples of countries that are successful in promoting healthy lifestyle that reflects in their tiny population are: