Derry has one of the north’s lowest rates of obesity related deaths, new figures reveal.
A total of six people had obesity related deaths in the Derry City Council area between 2008 and 2012 the statistics released by Stormont’s Department of Health show - that’s just 2.36% of the total number of deaths in the north where obesity was mentioned on the death certificate.
Belfast had the highest number of deaths at 48, followed by Lisburn with 13.
Health Minister Edwin Poots said obesity continues to be one of the most important public health challenges facing Northern Ireland.
“Its cost can extend far beyond the public sector and affect individuals, families, communities, the economy, and society as a whole”, he said.
“Up until recently, the number of people within Northern Ireland who are overweight or obese has been rising year-on-year.”
There was one obesity related death in Derry in 2008, 2009 and 2012, while three deaths were recorded in 2011. No obesity related deaths were recorded in the city in 2010.
In December of last year a report by the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation Ireland ranked second behind the UK in Europe’s obesity league table.
The report suggests 24.5% of the Irish population is obese and blames the rise in obesity on modern lifestyles, including our overuse of cars, TVs, computers and high-calorie food.