In a new study, health experts have found that nearly 90 percent of deaths linked to COVID19 have taken place in countries that have high obesity levels. They have found that the rate of death linked to COVID19 has been 10 times greater in countries such as the US where at least 50 percent of citizens have been found to be overweight. The findings of the study have been backed by the World Health Organization (WHO) as well. The study has been done by experts from World Obesity Federation (WOF). These experts have been demanding that people who are overweight or dealing with obesity should be prioritized in the vaccine rollout plan. The director-General of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has said that the findings of the study should act as a wake-up call for all countries around the world. He has said that the link between obesity and the rate of death related to COVID19 is convincing and quite apparent. The study has found that obesity is considered the second biggest predictor of severe disease linked to COVID19 after age. Health experts from 50 regional and national obesity bodies have been involved in the study. Experts have looked at the mortality data from John Hopkins University in the study. They have analyzed the WHO Global Health Observatory data as well during the study. They have found that nearly 2.2 million out of 2.5 million deaths linked to COVID19 in the world have occurred in nations with high obesity levels.
The study has not found any instances of high death rates in countries where less than 40 percent of people have been overweight. There is enough data available to support the findings of the new study, said the experts. Vietnam has seen the lowest death rate linked to the COVID19 pandemic in the world as it has the second-lowest level of the overweight population. As per the WHO data, the country has seen only 0.04 deaths per 100000 people due to COVID19 with 18.3 percent of overweight adults. On the other hand, the UK has seen the third-highest COVID19 death rate in the world with 184 deaths per 100000 people. The UK has the fourth-highest obesity rate, where 63.7 percent of adults are overweight. The US has reported nearly 152 deaths per 100000 people. The obesity rate in the US is nearly 68 percent. The senior policy advisor of the WOF and the lead author of the new study, Tim Lobstein has said that there has been a drastic boost in the national death rate that is linked to obesity.
In the meantime, a study, which has been published last month, has shown that the COVID19 vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNtech might not be able to protect obese people against viral infection. A report, which has been published by experts from Rome, has shown that people who have been dealing with obesity have developed weaker antibody responses after being vaccinated with two doses of the vaccine. The findings of this report have been released on the pre-print server MedRxiv. In this report, nearly 248 health care workers have been observed seven days after receiving the final dose of the vaccine to determine the effect of the vaccine on obese people. Experts from the National Cancer Institute Regina Elena have said that people who are considered obese with a body mass index (BMI) over 30 have been able to produce only half the amount of antibodies as compared to people who have been maintaining healthy body weight. It is uncertain what amount of antibodies is required to eliminate the SARS-CoV-2 virus, but experts believe that low levels of antibodies might derail the vaccination efforts.