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60 million Chinese are obese

6th November 2006

While 24 million people in China live in abject poverty and suffer malnutrition, 60 million Chinese are obese.

Pan Beilei, deputy director with the government-affiliated State Food and Nutrition Consultant Committee, told a conference on food consumption and health in Beijing that unbalanced diets had led to various health problems.

"An increasing number of Chinese are eating more fat and junk food but less grains and vegetables, leading to a high number of cases of high blood pressure and diabetes," Pan said.

Statistics show that about 160 million Chinese have high blood pressure and 20 million have diabetes.

Pan called on the government and academic organizations to give some dietary guidance to citizens.

The widening wealth gap is also to blame for regional diet difference. Narrowing the regional income gap would help improve the diet of citizens in poverty-stricken areas and make them more healthy, Pan said.


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