Body Mass Index (BMI) is your weight divided by your height (calculate your own here), and while it’s somewhat flawed, it remains a key metric for health analysts worried about the “globesity” problem.
The graphic (which you can enlarge here) shows how much of the world is above the 25 BMI “overweight” limit. It was designed by Visual.ly, and uses figures from the WHO. Average female BMI is in red; male BMI in green.
BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered “normal.” These countries, which include Afghanistan and Kenya–countries we might consider undernourished–are all below 23. The map below shows the countries that are listed.
These countries have BMI of between 23 and 24.9, and include France and Oman.
BMI between 25.0 and 29.9 is “overweight”. These countries (including many from Europe) are in the 25 to 26.9 category.
BMI 30 and above is “obese.” Most of these countries are just under that, with the exception of Kuwait and Argentina.
Finally–how you compare.
ChartsBin has a different map using figures from this very long named group. It shows all of North and South America, Middle East, and Europe (though not the U.K.) is in the 25 to 29.9 range, with Egypt and Kuwait above 30. Obesity rates have nearly doubled since 1980, the group says (it has a nice data tool here). Suffice to say, it’s worrying to see so much of the world “overweight,” given the association with problems like heart disease, stroke, and Type 2 diabetes.
[Image: Worldwide via Shutterstock]