The had a dramatic increase over years among all

The number
of obese subjects reaches more than double since 1980. In 2008; more than 10
percent of the world’s adult population are affected with obesity. 12
Thus, obesity has been considered a world epidemic and serious health threat,
since it is associated with other various diseases. 12, 66 Obesity
is marked with increasing prevalence in the developed as well as developing countries
worldwide. This growing incidence represents a pandemic that needs urgent
attention to avoid obesity-related morbidity and mortality. 67 Obesity is a chronic health problem with continuously
increasing rate worldwide. 68 The problem may be not
limited to the rate of spread of obesity itself; but also, to its associated
co-morbidities, 69 since obesity enhances the development
of multiple health risks. 64 The increasing prevalence of obesity constitutes a major public health challenge
in both developed and developing countries because of the continuously enlarged
burden of obesity and associated comorbidities on subject’s health, 70
including cardiovascular disease, hypertension, 71
type 2 diabetes (T2DM), dyslipidemia, obstructive sleep apnea, arthritis, cancer 72
and is estimated to reduce average life expectancy. 73
The
prevalence of obesity had a dramatic increase over years among all age groups,
ethnic groups, races, all socioeconomic classes and in both genders. Globally; there are more than one billion overweight adults, and
about 300 million obese subjects. 18 the severity of affection is more prominent in female (25-30 %)
than males (13-18 %), 19 and is reflected in increased mortality as well as morbidity
rates. 20 The prevalence of
obesity has increased by 200% through the past 2 decades, from 15% to an
estimated 27%, with nearly 74% of the women and 46.1% of the men suffer
from abdominal obesity. 21 because of it fast global spread rate; obesity is considered
the upcoming fifth leading cause of death. 74  Between 1980 and 2008; The Middle
East and North Africa were globally ranked as “the seventh of twenty-one”
highest prevalence of obesity in men, and the second highest in women. 75 Increased
longevity, adoption of Western-style eating habits and rapid lifestyle change are
all are associated with marked increase in non-communicable disorders in Saudi
Arabia. Obesity has a continuously progressive rate especially among the young
adults. Nearly about 28.9% of the Saudi population is suffering from obesity. 76
Many obesity-centered studies in Saudi Arabia concluded that all age
groups are affected with this epidemic, and reported that about one-third of
adults, one-fifth of adolescents, and one-tenth of children are suffering obesity
in Saudi Arabia. 77, 78, 79, 80, 81, 82 Previous studies reported that the prevalence of obesity ranged
from 14% in children to about 83% in adults in Saudi Arabia 83,
84 This wide variation could be due to the differences in
criteria used to define obesity as well as to the differences in age, sex, and
health status. 85The prevalence of obesity and
overweight in Saudi Arabia is
even higher than that reported in the USA, Australia, the UK, and Italy for
comparable male and female age groups. 86 Saudi Arabia is one of Middle
East countries with a shocking level of obesity. Saudi Arabia lies within the
top-ten nations with the highest rates of BMI. 87 The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has one
of the fastest-growing obesity rates in the world, with about 70-75% of Saudi
adults are overweight, and around one-third are obese. 88
WHO previously reported that overweight
and obesity prevalence in KSA are 72.5 % and 35.6 % for males and females
respectively 36According to
epidemiological studies and surveys, overweight and obesity were found to affect
large percentage of the adults in Saudi Arabia 77, 78,
89, 90, El-Hazmi and Warsy (1997) reported earlier that in the total Saudi
population; the prevalence of overweight and obesity is (27.23 % versus 25.20
%) and (13.05% versus 20.26%) for male and female groups respectively. The
prevalence of obesity varies in the different regions in KSA, but overall, is frequent
in all areas. A high proportion of the populations in the Central and Western
regions are obese (16.03 % versus 24.4 %) and (16.65 versus and 21.8 %) for
males and females respectively. 91 Al-Shammari
et al., reported that the prevalence of
obesity in Saudi male adults in Riyadh is about 28.6 % while 34.8% were
overweight. 92

 The prevalence of obesity in the
Western region is the highest, especially among the male population. 91 Earlier reports documented the regional high prevalence of obesity in
males in Riyadh ranging from 18 -28%, 93, 94, 95 and 45% in the Highlanders. 96 Earlier reports also documented high prevalence of obesity in females in
Riyadh = 44.1%, 97 Eastern Province = 27%, 98 Central Province = 29.7%, 95 and Highlanders in the Western Province of Saudi Arabia = 67.6%. 96 In a study between 2009-2011
conducted to measure the military personnel obesity prevalence, has found that
40.9% of the participants were overweight, 29% obese, and 42.4% with central
obesity. 99 This fast-uncontrollable obesity growth in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia can be attributed in part to the rapid
socio-cultural changes, “Westernization” and changes in food and
eating habits recently observed among Saudi population. 

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