Obesity, overweight and body-weight perception in a High Atlas Moroccan population


A Lahmam, Laboratory of Human Ecology, Department of Biology, University Cadi Ayyad, Faculty of Sciences Semlalia, Marrakech, Morocco. E-mail: a.lahmam@ucam.ac.ma


In order to study the prevalence of obesity and overweight and to understand how the human body is perceived among Moroccan mountain populations, we carried out a survey that covered a sample of 436 Amazigh individuals aged 20 years and more from the High Moroccan Atlas. Through this survey, we noticed that obesity is still low among men (2.4%), whereas the prevalence of obesity among women is alarming and reaches 13.3%. The prevalence of overweight is also high, especially among women, with 32.8% vs. 21.8% among men. Obesity prevalence, especially overweight, is higher than that recorded in the national rural level. The high prevalence of overweight that can develop to obesity should be taken into account mainly when dealing with women that still value overweight. In fact, women in our sample underestimate their overweight more than men and wish to have a heavier body.