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Sitting at a desk all day is part of the problem – too many office workers get no on-the-job exercise. Also to blame are the lack of workplace facilities to store and eat food, the absence of on-site gyms, work related stress and overtime. These conclusions came from a study of obesity and workplace conditions conducted in Europe by the Harvard School of Public Health and the Cyprus International Institute for the Environment and Public Health.
The researchers found that 19 percent of Dutch citizens and 31 percent of Irish citizens get no exercise at work. Worse, 55 percent of Greeks and Croatians and 61 percent of French people do no exercise at all. Switching from traditional diets to fast food high in saturated fats is also part of the trend, the researchers said.
The solution? Fitness incentives for employees and a break from desk-bound routines, the investigators suggested. But first both employers and employees have to recognize how serious the issue is: by 2015 2 billion people worldwide will be overweight and 700 million will be obese, the researchers said.