Saturday, March 3, 2012

Arab diets: the double burden

"The most obvious explanation for this paradox is that the two problems exist in separate realms: obesity among the well-to-do, under-nutrition among the poor. Yet this is not the whole story. Obesity and malnutrition exist not only in the same country but within the same community, the same household and even, strange as it may seem, in the same person.
A study by Hala Ghattas of the American University of Beirut looks at three marginal populations in Lebanon: the villages of Tyre, a group of Bedouins and Palestinian refugees. All are relatively poor, but a third of the worst-off Bedouin were still obese and another quarter were overweight. In Tyre, some villages are largely unaffected; one, called Tayr Harfa, is many times worse off than its neighbours. Problems of under- and over-nutrition appear in the same communities."

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