SINGAPORE - The obesity rate in Singapore has increased, and the Health Promotion Board (HPB) is declaring war against this scourge.
Key to its battle against the bulge is its national-level weight management initiative, the Million kg Challenge, with the top 10 winners from the inaugural season unveiled today.
The second season of the Million kg Challenge was also launched today at the Toa Payoh HDB Hub, which was officiated by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong.
HPB said in a statement that there will be more road shows to encourage sign-ups, as well as over 80 weigh-in kiosks for participants to monitor their weight-loss efforts.
Members of the public can also register for the Million kg Challenge or weigh-in at Guardian Pharmacy outlets.
Besides the individual challenge, HPB has added two more categories - group and company - to motivate participants to lose weight through peer-support groups.
Organisations can ride on the challenge to form their weight-loss programmes under the company category.
Mr Zee Yoong Kang, Chief Executive of HPB, said, "Maintaining a healthy weight and losing weight requires concerted effort and is an on-going process. The Million kg Challenge encourages Singapore residents to take a step forward in managing their weight by making weight loss resources available to the wider population."
"With the launch of season two, we are leveraging our experience in the first season to provide even greater support and positive reinforcement to motivate signups and active participation," he added.
According to the Ministry of Health's 2010 National Health Survey, which is published every six years, 11 per cent of Singaporean adults aged between 18 to 69 years were obese compared to 7 per cent in 2004. 1.7 million Singaporeans had a BMI of 23 or greater, which makes them vulnerable to developing obesity-related diseases such as diabetes and heart diseases.
The Million kg Challenge is open to Singapore residents between the ages of 18 to 64 years whose BMI ranges from 18.5 to 37.4, where participants of BMI 23 to 37.4 can aim to achieve a healthy weight and those of BMI 18.5 to 22.9 can aim to maintain their weight.
From Oct 25, registration to participate in the Challenge will be open at road shows across Singapore and at the Challenge portal at www.millionkg.sg.