Europeans tend to make fun of Americans for being fat and obese, but over the years, these same Europeans have been gaining as much weight as Americans. Soon, both Americans and Europeans will be in the same category when it comes down to being overweight, and it will be interesting to see how the fat jokes work out if and when that happens.

A study released by the World Health Organization and the UK Health Forum has shown that, by 2030, Ireland will become the fattest nation in Europe. Apparently, 90 percent of all Irish men could come face-to-face with obesity, while the same thing could happen to 86 percent of the women.

This issue is blamed on a lack of exercise, poor diet and sugar in-take. These are always the main culprits when it comes down to obesity, and despite being talked about in the public eye for decades, folks are still unable to do what is right for their own well being.

According to the study, which was released at the EuroPrevent conference in Amsterdam, a person who weighs 169 to 202 pounds with a height of 5'9" is considered overweight. A weight of 203 pounds and above is considered obese for folks in the 5'9" height region.

This trend is not only a problem in Ireland but is happening in every single country in Europe. Obesity is on the rise in 53 nations in Europe.

"Our study presents a worrying picture of rising obesity across Europe. Policies to reverse this trend are urgently needed," said the UK Health Forum's Dr. Laura Webber, lead author of the study.

"There is no silver bullet for tackling this," she told Shots, a NPR radio health program. "We need a comprehensive package of approaches to support healthy eating and more physical activity in daily life."

The reasons the title as most overweight country could find its way to Ireland could be due to the economic downturn, which forces its citizens to purchase cheaper yet less healthy foods. Webber recommends policy changes to improve the nutritional content of processed food, making healthier food more affordable and increasing taxes on sugary drinks so they before more unaffordable.

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