In a single year, obesity killed more than double the amount of people COVID-19 did in Malta.
In reply to a question posed by Nationalist MP Ivan Bartolo, Health Minister Chris Fearne confirmed that in 2019, 369 people died from obesity.
Earlier this morning, the Health Ministry announced the passing of four COVID-19 patients. This means that as of today, Malta has confirmed 141 COVID-19 related deaths.
Statistics from 2017 show that 11.57% of deaths in Malta are attributed to obesity, a number that is slightly higher than the Western European average (9.63%) but significantly lower than the US average (14.1%).
Obesity-related deaths seem to be particularly common in Eastern Europe, with countries like Romania, Hungary, Slovakia, and Bulgaria all attributing more than 15% of their deaths to obesity.
Having said that, Eurostat numbers published in 2014 show that Malta has the highest rate of both male and female obesity in Europe.
Around 66.8% of adult males and 55.2% of adult females in Malta are overweight. These numbers are significantly higher than the European average.
As of 2014, 59.1% of adult males and 44.7% of adult females in Europe were overweight.