The corned beef plague

The Pacific Islands affinity for processed, canned meats dates, in large part, to World War II, which brought Spam and Marines to the region, though bio-anthropologists suggest that cultures built around long ocean voyages favor those with genetic predisposition to building ample fat reserves.

While the report said Australia had overtaken the United States as the fattest nation on the planet, recent U.S. studies show around 34 percent of Americans are overweight or obese.

And small Pacific nations top World Health Organization lists, with 94.5 percent of people in tiny Nauru classed as overweight, leading to chronic diabetes problems on the island.

The Federated States of Micronesia (91.1 percent), the Cook Islands (90.9 percent), Tonga (90.8 percent) and Niue (81.7 percent) rounded out the WHO top five, while the United States came in at number nine, with 74.1 percent overweight or obese.


from ”Australia vies with Pacific, U.S. to be fattest”, by Rob Taylor, Reuters, 19 June 2008

Originally published at culture-making.com.

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