Obesity in Asia?

I was very surprised by this article. I attended high school in Singapore, and at 5’7", 120 lb. I felt HUGE next to the Singaporean women. In Taiwan, do you feel that there has also been a noticeable increase in obesity, and that the women there are more conscious about their bodies and open to “enhancements”?

Beauty Salons Busted for Misleading Ads
Fri Feb 18, 8:18 AM ET Oddly Enough - Reuters

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore regulators are moving to protect the public from a wave of misleading advertisements promoting bigger breasts, fuller lips and other body enhancements in a wealthy nation grappling with rising obesity.

Two breast-enhancement ads were barred from publication this week for failing to make clear that promised results had not been proven by medical studies, the Advertising Standards Authority of Singapore (ASAS) said Friday.

The crackdown follows a surge in complaints by disappointed women against bust-treatment salons and by men who say some hair-growth centers fail to live up to their promise.

“We have written to the advertisers and the media owners to inform that the ads have to be amended before they can be published,” said ASAS spokeswoman Priscilla Low.

Salons offering quick fixes ranging from slimming, hair growth, hair removal, bigger breasts and fuller lips are mushrooming across Singapore, Asia’s third-wealthiest society after Japan and Hong Kong.

At the same time, Singapore’s collective waistline is bulging with obesity rates rising, a trend some researchers attribute to a gradual shift in diet in the predominantly ethnic-Chinese island toward Western fast foods.

Singapore’s last national health survey in 1998 showed that the proportion of its 4.2 million people listed as overweight had risen in six years from 21 to 24 percent, while those categorized as obese had increased from 5 to 6 percent.

Slimming salons are doing a roaring trade, and advertisements boasting of breast treatments and other beauty quick fixes often fill local newspapers, many offering money-back guarantees or promoting quick and easy “lunchtime therapies.”

A consumer watchdog, the Consumers Association of Singapore, said it had received 60 complaints last year about companies offering bust enhancements, mostly from career women who felt misled by the salons and sought refunds for unsatisfactory results.

There were 102 complaints about hair-growth centers in the same period.

Under new rules that took effect on Jan. 1, “before-and-after” testimonials featuring women boasting of a fuller bustline or previously balding men now sporting a crowning glory of thick hair will be banned unless medically proven.

The advertisement watchdog said the two breast-treatment ads had been spotted in random newspaper checks. Seven other ads, a combination of hair-growth treatment and bust-enhancement promotions, were also being reviewed for failing to feature the disclaimers prominently.

“Under the revised advertising code, ads for bust enhancements and hair-loss treatments must display a disclaimer,” said Low of the ASAS.

I’m 180cm, 78kg male and the Taiwanese say that I am very big. WTF? Basically, if you aren’t super skinny, you are considered overweight. Different culture I guess.
Over the years, I have noticed an increase in overweight children. Parents are getting too busy/lazy to make proper meals so they go to McDonalds for supper. I’m afraid things will only get worse.
Even the super hotties I have met always find something wrong with their bodies. :loco: They say that people look down on them if they have flaws. The whole thing is just crazy to me.

Well, I’ll comment on the obesity phenomenon. Obesity has been on the increase worldwide. It is definitely on the increase here. Junkfood and an increasingly sedentary lifestyle are likely to blame for this. Not sure about the cosmetic surgery stuff. I’m not sure if it’s really a related issue.

I guess I am curious as to what is considered obese in Taiwan. Do they have the same “standard” as the US where a size 18 dress (women) and above would constitue you as obese, or “plus-size” (14-16 is considered overweight). Whe I was in Taiwan about a year and a half ago, I did not encounter one female that I would consider obese -there were some men though. I guess it is such a foreign concept to me considering how I am going by the “American standard”. Are there health clubs on every corner and advertisements on weight loss products, programs and surgery?

Fat is an environmental issue.

I just asked my girlfriend about this. She said that there are less obese women because of the huge pressure for women to stay thin. An obese woman would almost find it impossible to get married because most men here wouldn’t want her. She also says that many obese women here do not go outside a lot because they are constsntly ridiculed about their weight. :idunno:
I live in central Taiwan and it is very difficult to find a large number of health clubs. However, the TV is constantly showing commercials about “magic weight loss teas”, etc. Unfortunately, many women here fall victim to these money hungry bastards. :frowning:

People have access to food in Asia now. In the “good old days” when everybody was stick thin, lots of people went hungry. Talk to some Taiwanese over 30 about their childhood.

Rising obesity is sort of sad but considering the alternative, I’m not losing any sleep over it.

Fat is a relative issue.

My neighbor who a is 70 years old whiskey fiend was talking about this to me over drinks durring Chinese New Year. He told me that twenty five years ago you never saw an obese kid any where outside. He was saying it’s all America’s fault for bringing Mcdonalds and sugar-added foods to Taiwan. Which lead to his theory of the upcomming world war three thats soon to happen and how China is waiting for western nations to be slowed by there own weight. Which was interesting in it’s own right! It’s always cool to hang with the old guy and hear about the past in Taiwan and then listen to him rant once three quarters of a bottle are nice and safe in him.

In the Lonely Planet for Vietnam there is a “Boxed Text” called Love for Sale that talks about the trade in Vietnamese husband for obese Taiwanese women. Prices set by the kg! Apparently the going rate per LP 7th Ed 2003 was 1.2~1.8 million dong per kg (approx US$80~120).

high fructose corn syrup. They put that in almost everything you can find that is remotely sweetened in America.

add to that the American diet/palate is: SUGAR this and that, FRIED this and that (not to mention SALT this and that).

There are loads of plump ladies from Japan and Australia wandering around Indonesia looking to do a little of the old tube snake boogie. Not certain that are always paying for it but it certainly looks that way.

I first arrived in 1985. I was by far the fattest person on the island at the time.

Now, I have plenty of competition in that regard.


I disagree with your assessment of Singapore. There are lots of chubby girls there in my opinion – even more than in Taiwan. The city is more “westernized” than Taiwan depsite the fascist Singaporean government’s adherence to so-called “Asian values.” But the simple fact is this – young girls in Singapore these days are getting fatter and fatter from the westernized diet. Indian and Malay girls can be especially hefty. On a whole, I would say Taiwan people weigh less.

like everything else in TW i think it depends on where you look… in southern and especially rural ( as rural as Taiwan gets anyway) areas if a girl turns out slim, not bad looking and clever enough not to get knocked up before she’s 18, she’s off to Taipei… if she’s built like an Ox compounded by the lazy McDiet phenomenon… like a previous poster mentioned she’ll stay at home, literally…

same thing applies to men, although Taiwanese men are very self congratulatory of their physical shortcomings, and society as a whole is far more forgiving of overweight men… but there are definitely some serious slobs in small town across this island… although admittedly only a handful can compete with good old fashioned american obesity…

judging by the cost of food here, I assumed ppl were skinny here because they couldn’t afford to be obese.

The price of fruits, veges, milk, bread, cake, cheese is a lot higher here than elsewhere.

[quote=“webdoctors”]judging by the cost of food here, I assumed ppl were skinny here because they couldn’t afford to be obese.

The price of fruits, veges, milk, bread, cake, cheese is a lot higher here than elsewhere.[/quote]


Modern man has become altogether too adapt at providing himself with food and he is required to do very little in the way of physical work to get it. The result is that he is getting fatter. It isn’t healthy and it isn’t attractive (there are exceptions to this).

In the process of producing, distributing, preparing, consuming and excreting all these surplus calories mankind is slowly but surely destroying the planet. That about sums it up I guess.

Fat is an environmental issue in both senses of the word.