Rise In Obesity Related Deaths In NI

Deaths involving obesity have almost doubled in Northern Ireland over an eight-year period, according to new statistics.

The Department of Health figures showed being overweight was listed on 64 death certificates in 2016.

The figure has increased from the 33 mentions recorded in 2008.

The British Medical Association (BMA) said the number of death certificate references, however, failed to fully represent the full impact of the problem on society.

Dr Paul Darragh said: "Generally about 63% of the population here are overweight, around 25% are obese.

"This can lead to a whole range of lifelong health conditions including hypertension, diabetes, stroke and certain types of cancer.
News Image
"There is a need to take effective action. Around one in five children are obese, that's a burden that will impact their health for the rest of their lives."

Around 14,500 deaths are recorded annually in Northern Ireland, and obesity was mentioned on 487 certificates between 2008 and 2016.

Dr Darragh called for measures to tackle the growing epidemic, including more easily understood labels on food, restrictions on the marketing of foods higher in sugar, fat and salt, and better education on making informed dietary choices.

The Institute of Public Health in Ireland estimated in 2015 that of all the children in Northern Ireland, more than 30,000 are expected to die prematurely as a result of childhood obesity.

"The lifetime burden of childhood obesity is huge and, if unaddressed, will pose a burden for future generations, the economy and our healthcare system," said spokesman Kevin Balanda.


Related Northern Ireland News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

01 February 2018
PHA Launches Breastfeeding Campaign
The Public Health Agency (PHA) has launched a new breastfeeding campaign. The campaign highlights the health benefits of breastfeeding and supporting mums to feel more comfortable breastfeeding in public. The SDLP has welcomed the launch of the Public Health Agency’s breastfeeding campaign.
21 June 2018
Systemic Failures In Education, Poverty & Mental Health In NI
The Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People has warned of 'systemic failures' in education, poverty and mental health.
22 May 2017
Concerns Raised Over Adult Mental Health Patients
The number of adult mental health patients waiting longer than nine weeks to access key services has more than doubled from 338 in March 2016 to over 800 in March 2017, according to new figures. Ulster Unionist Mental Health spokesperson, Robbie Butler MLA, warned that mental health patients could be coming to harm.
09 April 2019
Cost Of NI Locum Doctors Almost Trebles To £83m
The spiralling cost of paying for locum doctors in Northern Ireland has put the health system under serious financial pressure, according to a report by the Northern Ireland Audit Office. Total expenditure has almost trebled to £83 million over the last seven years.
08 April 2019
HPV Vaccine To Be Extended To Boys
Boys aged 12-13 in Northern Ireland will soon be offered a vaccine to help protect them against Human Papillomavirus (HPV) and other related cancers. It comes as the Department of Health makes two significant health protection announcements today, Monday 08 April.