Half of Ireland overweight

  • Olivia Fens

Almost half of all people in Ireland are overweight or dangerously obese, a new study has found.

According to the new research, 61% of Irish men and 39% of Irish women are reportedly overweight.

County Tipperary was found to be the most overweight county with approximately 58% of respondents overweight, while County Kerry reported the lowest figures with 41% being overweight.

Furthermore, the study found that 24% of the adult population do no exercise at all. 

Physical inactivity is a major contributing factor to heart disease and increases the risk of colon cancer.

Heart disease is the number one killer in Ireland with approximately 10,000 people dying each year from cardiovascular disease, accounting for 36% of all deaths.
Commenting on the results, Dublin GP Stephen Murphy said: “With almost half of the Irish adult population being overweight, these figures are extremely worrying.

“While maintaining a healthy weight through a balanced diet and exercise is important for general health, it is in heart health where some of the biggest health gains can be realised.

“Regular exercise in conjunction with a healthy diet from a young age will have a huge benefit to your health in later years and it is never too late to start a healthier approach to life.”
The study was produced Hibernian Aviva Health.


Anonymous - 25/08/2009 10:04

What is not being investigated and what is the key to this I believe, is the underlying cause of obesity. Yes, on the surface, it is overeating and lack of exercise, but the root cause is never even looked at, it seems.

Freddie - 25/08/2009 12:10

This is a shocking statistic, I see so many overweight children and teenagers every day in my line of work. What can the government physically do to stop people over eating? I believe parents are hugely responsible for this.

buzz - 25/08/2009 14:10

I don't think it is the governments responsibility to ensure that children are not obese (and for Gods sake don't put any more ideas for tax into their little heads ha ha) It is the parents who feed them on rubbishy frozen food and takeaways. Then again, when i was a child I remember being able to go outside to ride a bike or play tip the can. now, parents can't let their children out of their sight. It is seen as much safer to just place them in front of a TV or Computer game.

Anonymous - 25/08/2009 15:40


Buzz, I think you have a point, and lets face it, if the government took on that  responsibility, they'd probably make a complete hash of it as well. Let's face it they don't have a good track record.

I think it is important to examine what is behind the parents feeding children on convenience foods? In part I think, because we have becoem a time-poor society. Something has to give and in this case it's our diets and out activity levels.

buzz - 25/08/2009 16:37

Agreed Chris, and it is such a shame really because often just a little bit of preparation can make things so much easier. We are living in a society now where more and more families have two parents going out to work (I use the term going out because I believe those who "stay in" do a lot of work also!) and so the last thing they feel like doing in the evening after collecting kids, battling traffic, ahrd day at the office etc is start chopping and peeling. I think freezing food in preparation is a huge help. Often, if we are doing a big sunday roast, we will "size up" the ingredients and make a few extra portions and freeze in individual containers. It's handy to have them there for those late evenings.

I don't think it would do any harm for the government to sponsor a few local classes that teach people some basic, nutritious recipes that can be made on a budget. This would provide some employment for the facilitators and also be of benefit to those who may not be confident in the kitchen. Then again, that would be far too bright for our lads in office wouldnt it? :)

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