Society

How hunger and obesity coexist in Brazil

How hunger and obesity coexist in Brazil
Brazilian vendor walks along Copacabana Beach carrying bags of potato chips for sale. Photo: Shutterstock

Despite being one of the world’s major food producers, Brazil experiences an unsettling paradox: the country is both underfed and overfed. Obesity levels are increasing at an alarming rate, having gone from 11.8 percent in 2006 to 19.8 percent of adults now (a 68-percent increase). These numbers could serve to corroborate recent statements by President Jair Bolsonaro and Citizenship Minister Osmar Terra, both of whom claimed that hunger is no longer a Brazilian problem.

Except it is.

According to the UN, Brazil is one of the 51 countries most exposed to risks of malnutrition—next to countries like Ethiopia, Indonesia, and...

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