Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Increasing Prosperity Has Prompted Irish Children To Balloon 24 Kilograms Since 1948

Date:
February 15, 2009
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
Irish children now weigh 24 kilograms more than they did in 1948, reveals new research.

Irish kids now weigh 24 kilos more than they did in 1948, reveals research published ahead of print in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health.

A rapid increase in prosperity has gone hand in hand with the surge in obesity in Ireland, dubbed the "Celtic Tiger" on account of its rapid economic growth, say the authors. But the current economic downturn is unlikely to reverse these trends, they suggest.

The researchers base their findings on three large scale national surveys of the heights and weights of schoolchildren between the ages of four and 14 in Ireland, which were carried out in 1948, during the 1970s, and in 2002.

During the 1940s, Ireland's economy was stagnant, and it certainly did not benefit from a post war boom. In 1948, its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was 0.432 billion Euros. But by 2002, its per capita GDP was over 130 million Euros, the second highest in Europe.

The serial measurements showed that over the decades, children grew taller. On average, 14 year old boys were 23.1 cm taller and girls 15.6 cm taller in 2002 than they were in 1948.

But the most dramatic increases were evident in their weight. 14 year old boys were 65% heavier, on average, in 2002 than they were in 1948, weighing in at 60.9 kilos compared with 37 kilos in 1948. And 14 year old girls were 48% heavier, weighing in at an average of 58.7 kilos compared with 39.5 kilos in 1948.

Most of the increases in weight occurred from the 1970s onwards, the data show.

The authors point out that children in Ireland might have been undernourished in 1948, but their nutritional intake was comparable with that of the rest of Europe, because they were not subject to food rationing after the war.

"The data provide stark and compelling evidence on the evolution of the obesity epidemic in Irish children in tandem with the increase in economic prosperity," they write. But the current economic downturn is unlikely to turn round the tide of obesity, they add. If anything, it is likely to make matters worse.

"One can only speculate as to the effect that the current downturn in the Irish economy will have on the prevalence of obesity in Ireland," they say. "However, it is likely that, coupled with the increasing problem of food poverty and food insecurity, socioeconomic obesity gradients will be accentuated, and the underlying high prevalence of overweight and obesity will not be reversed."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Increasing Prosperity Has Prompted Irish Children To Balloon 24 Kilograms Since 1948." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 February 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090209205158.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2009, February 15). Increasing Prosperity Has Prompted Irish Children To Balloon 24 Kilograms Since 1948. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090209205158.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Increasing Prosperity Has Prompted Irish Children To Balloon 24 Kilograms Since 1948." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090209205158.htm (accessed September 21, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

Sierra Leone in Lockdown to Control Ebola

AP (Sep. 21, 2014) Sierra Leone residents remained in lockdown on Saturday as part of a massive effort to confine millions of people to their homes in a bid to stem the biggest Ebola outbreak in history. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Sierra Leone's Nationwide Ebola Curfew Underway

Newsy (Sep. 20, 2014) Sierra Leone is locked down as aid workers and volunteers look for new cases of Ebola. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Changes Found In Brain After One Dose Of Antidepressants

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) A study suggest antidepressants can kick in much sooner than previously thought. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Could Grief Affect The Immune Systems Of Senior Citizens?

Newsy (Sep. 19, 2014) The study found elderly people are much more likely to become susceptible to infection than younger adults going though a similar situation. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins