The world’s fattest countries REVEALED in a new interactive map

The world’s fattest countries REVEALED in a new interactive map

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It is one of the most remote islands in the world, home to picturesque beaches, golden sands and even an underground lake.

Yet the Pacific island of Nauru doesn’t just top the charts as one of the most luxurious holiday destinations.

Because data shows that it is actually the fattest country in the world.

Almost nine out of 10 people on the island, a four and a half hour flight from Brisbaneare overweight.

The 10 MOST obese nations in the world

1. Nauru – 88.5 percent

2. Palace – 85.1 percent

3. Cook Islands – 84.7 percent

4. Marshall Islands – 83.5 percent

5. Tuvalu – 81.9 percent

6. Niue – 80.0 percent

7. Kiribati – 78.7 percent

8. Tonga – 78.5 percent

9. Samoa – 77.6 percent

10. Micronesia – 75.9 percent

The 10 LEAST overweight nations in the world

1. Vietnam – 18.3 percent

2. India – 19.7 percent

3. Bangladesh – 20.0 percent

4. Ethiopia – 20.9 percent

5. Nepal – 21.0 percent

6. Timor – 21.6 percent

7. Cambodia – 21.7 percent

8. Eritrea – 22.0 percent

9. Niger – 22.0 percent

10. Burundi – 22.2 percent

In contrast, Vietnam holds the distinction of being the weakest nation.

Only 18.3 percent of the Southeast Asian nation’s population was overweight or obese at the time of the latest global survey.

A fascinating interactive map published by Our World in Data — which users of the MailOnline app can view by clicking here — illustrates the huge divide in obesity rates.

The data comes from a compilation of data from 195 countries around the world in 2016.

It showed that more than a third – or 39 percent – of the world’s adults are overweight or obese.

An estimated 64 percent of Britons and 68 percent of Americans are also obese, the figures show.

The statistics come from the NCD Risk Factor Collaboration, which recorded global trends from 128.9 million people between 1975 and 2016.

It looks at body mass data, specifically the number of people who are underweight, overweight or obese.

No nation saw a drop in obesity rates during this period, the data published by Our World in Data revealed.

All ten of the world’s fattest nations are found in the Pacific, with the island of Palau reporting the second-highest proportion of adults who are overweight or obese at 85.1 percent.

This was followed by the Cook Islands, the Marshall Islands and Tuvalu, which recorded levels of 84.7%, 83.5% and 81.9% respectively.

Outside the Pacific region, Kuwait reported a rate of 73.4 percent, placing it in eleventh position.

The USA was 15th, Australia 25th and Great Britain 30th in the league table of 195 nations.

The world’s third smallest country, Nauru, recorded the highest percentage of adults who were either obese or overweight at 88.5 percent. Pictured above is Buada Lagoon in Nauru

Vietnam has the world's lowest rates of obesity and overweight adults at just 18.3 percent.  Pictured above, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Vietnam has the world’s lowest rates of obesity and overweight adults at just 18.3 percent. Pictured above, Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam


Body mass index (BMI) is a measure of body fat based on your weight in relation to your height.

Standard formula:

  • BMI = (weight in pounds / (height in inches x height in inches)) x 703

Metric formula:

  • BMI = (weight in kilograms / (height in meters x height in meters))


  • Under 18.5: Underweight
  • 18.5 – 24.9: Healthy
  • 25 – 29.9: Overweight
  • 30 – 39.9: Obesity
  • 40+: Morbid obesity

Overweight is defined as a body mass index (BMI) equal to or greater than 25, while obesity is recorded as an adult with a BMI of 30 or greater.

A healthy person’s BMI — calculated by dividing weight in kg by height in meters and the answer again by height — is between 18.5 and 24.9.

Obesity is a risk factor for several of the world’s leading causes of death, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes and various cancers.

Type 2 diabetes, which is linked to obesity, can also lead to complications such as heart disease, vision loss and kidney problems.

According to The Lancet’s 2017 Global Burden of Disease study, 4.7 million people died prematurely in 2017 as a result of obesity.

In the UK, obesity and related diseases cost the NHS an estimated £6.1 billion a year, which is expected to rise to over £9.7 billion each year by 2050.

It is also thought to be responsible for more than 30,000 deaths each year in the UK.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that obesity costs the U.S. health care system nearly $173 billion annually.

According to Our World in Data, globally 13 percent of adults aged 18 and over were registered as obese in 2016.

In comparison, along with Vietnam, which recorded the lowest rates of overweight or obese people, India reported the second lowest share at 19.7 percent.

Bangladesh is the third least overweight nation in the world at exactly 20.0 percent.

In most high-income countries, about two-thirds of adults were overweight or obese.

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