Photo via Newsweek
You probably wouldn’t believe it if we told you, but quite a number of Malaysians actually lost weight over the COVID-19 lockdown!
A recent survey by French market research company Ipsos revealed that 36% of Malaysians lost weight during the pandemic and only 19% experienced an average weight gain of almost 5kg.
This is contrary to the worldwide trend of weight gain, where 31% of respondents said they put on weight at an average of 6kg, with only 20% managing to shed kilos.
The study was conducted among 22,008 respondents aged between 16 and 74 across 30 countries.
“While weight gain has been the result in many countries, weight loss is a more common outcome in Malaysia,” Lars Erik Lie, Senior Manager of Ipsos Public Affairs said in the report.
“Among the many measures taken by Malaysians who try to become leaner, cutting down on consumption of sugary drinks and sugar in general are key ingredients,” he added.
This, as the study also found that 72% of Malaysians cut down on sugar on their path to a healthier lifestyle but only 35% were willing to give up or reduce carbohydrates.
Whereas globally, results showed that sugar was the first to go when trying to lose weight with 62% of respondents saying they would cut down or stop taking it.
I mean, let’s face it… we’re Malaysians. It’s difficult to give up rice, right?!
And you’d also be surprised to know that 61% out of the 45% of Malaysian respondents trying to lose weight exercised more.
As you know, Malaysia is generally known to have one of the highest obesity indices in Southeast Asia (SEA), but these numbers seem to contradict that statement, especially when compared with studies done over the first Movement Control Order (MCO) last year.
A study by the World Population Review 2019 found that Malaysia has the highest prevalence of obesity among adults in South-east Asia at 15.6%, followed by Brunei (14.1%), Thailand (10%) and Indonesia (6.9%).
The National Health and Morbidity Survey 2019 findings, meanwhile, showed that 50.1% of adults in Malaysia were either overweight or obese — 30.4% were overweight and 19.7% obese.
If you're trying to lose weight, check out our article on some common misconceptions about weight loss
Let’s keep the momentum going, guys!
by Kyle Roshen Jacob