By Wendy Williams
SPAIN has the third highest level of child obesity in the world.
The issue has become Spain’s “public enermy number one,” according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), who commissioned the report.
Over the last 30 years, obesity has spread to “epidemic” proportions, despite billions of euros being spent to remedy it, found the report.
An alarming 30 per cent of teenagers are overweight, putting Spain just behind America and Scotland for obesity.
It comes as statistics reveal that a staggering 40 per cent of youths aged between 13 and 18 never practice sport.
Moreover the OECD predicts that the number of overweight people will rise by a further 10 per cent over the next decade.
This comes as the Spanish health ministry already spends 2.5 billion euros a year on obesity-related illnesses.
Some two thirds of men are already overweight in Spain, while one in six is officially obese.
Unhealthy diets and a lack of exercise are to blame for the rapidly-growing trend.
Modern Spanish families are moving away from the traditional Mediterranean diet and eating more fats and sugars than ever before.
According to Roberto Sabrido from the Spanish Food Safety Agency, people have changed how they eat.
He said: “People no longer eat as a family and the food and the time dedicated to eating is not the same.”
Moreover, with so much exposure to the internet, television and videogames the younger generation is getting lazy.
The problem is expected to cost the Spanish state, as overweight people are more likely to develop diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer.
In fact, one in every five adolescents in Spain now runs the risk of suffering major cardiovascular problems in later life.