NOS Nieuws•vandaag, 02:18
A quarter of young adults in the Netherlands are overweight, and 7 percent are even seriously overweight (obese). This is reported by the Central Bureau of Statistics.
The percentage of overweight children and young people has increased in recent years. In 2014, 15 percent of 2 to 24-year-olds were overweight, in 2022 this will be 17 percent. Of young adults between the ages of 18 and 25, 21 percent were overweight in 2014 and 25 percent in 2022. The proportion of young people with obesity has remained the same since 2014.
When are you overweight?
Statistics Netherlands asked respondents in the survey about their height and body weight. If a person’s BMI (kg/m2) is over 25, they are overweight. People over 30 are seriously overweight or obese.
Other limit values apply to persons under the age of 20 and 18. These values depend on age and gender.
The origin and educational level of the parents seem to play an important role. Obesity, for example, occurs three times as often in children up to the age of 12 whose parents have completed no more than a pre-vocational education as in children whose parents have completed a higher vocational or university education. (Severe) overweight is also more common in children with at least one parent who is obese.
Young people (aged 2 to 25) from outside Europe are 24 percent more likely to be overweight than young people from Dutch origin (15 percent). Boys and girls are approximately equally likely to be overweight.
Furthermore, a large proportion of overweight young people exercise too little, according to Statistics Netherlands. Overweight young people aged 12 to 18 least often meet the Health Council’s exercise guidelines: only 29 percent do so. According to that guideline, it is healthy for children up to the age of 12 to do at least one hour a day of “moderately intensive exercise”, such as cycling and walking.