The increase in the share of the unemployed population and the fall in income levels in Russia are explained, among other things, by the increase in the incidence of obesity, said MD, President of the Society of Bariatric Surgeons Bekhan Khatsiev. In a conversation with Pravda.Ru, the specialist noted that the disease, which at first glance has only an “external” character, actually entails a number of other health problems, which, in turn, lead to disability.
“Various international studies confirm that low-income families are more likely to develop obesity. Therefore, of course, the more people live below the poverty line, the higher the obesity statistics in the state will be – this applies to developed and developing countries. However, the economic well-being of the population and this disease also have an inverse relationship: obesity in some cases leads to disability and, as a result, to an increase in the proportion of the unemployed population,” Khatsiev said.
According to the expert, about 30% of the working-age population in Russia suffers from obesity. And although such a figure is a big problem not only for the healthcare system, but also for society as a whole, nevertheless, the effective treatment of this disease with the help of bariatric surgery has not yet become widespread in Russia, he explained.
“This comes from the fact that obesity, contrary to public opinion, is not a problem of appearance, but a serious chronic disease that leads to the development of various pathologies – from type 2 diabetes to certain types of cancer – and, on average, reduces a person’s life by ten years. “As a result of obesity-associated diseases, a person often loses the ability to work and perform habitual activities. It can also be added here that due to obesity, the costs of the healthcare system also increase, since patients with this disease need medical care more often, “said Dr. Sciences.
The most vulnerable social group to obesity are low-income people, Khatsiyev noted. He explained that cheaper products (such as nuggets) contain fewer useful nutrients, while consuming fewer resources for the consumer to prepare. On the other hand, a high level of income may not necessarily protect a person from obesity, the doctor emphasized, explaining that the availability of a variety of foods with a high income can also lead to the onset of the disease.
Former Press Secretary of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Peskov drew attention to the problems in the field of employment in Russia. At the same time, the Kremlin spokesman assured that the authorities are taking measures to curb the growth of unemployment in the country, noting, however, that at the moment it is too early to judge whether they are sufficient.
“It is premature to speak, because the situation is just beginning, so far everything has been normal with employment,” the representative of the TASS president quotes.
According to Rosstat, in Russia in the first quarter of 2022, 20.9 million people were below the poverty line.