Globally, Egypt ranks 7th when it comes to child obesity, with 32 percent of the countries children being overweight.
According to the World Obesity Federation, the figures for the adult population isn't any better; 26.4 percent of men and 50.3 percent of women are obese in Egypt.
When a diet filled with meat, carbohydrates, and sugar crosses path with few opportunities to exercise, these numbers remain a mystery no more.
Here are a few reasons why dieting is not easy for Egyptians.
1. A grain-based diet
Egyptian diet is high in carbs and usually low in protein since not all families can afford meat, which means they rely on starch to fill their stomachs.
Koshari is the staple of Egyptian cuisine and the average serving of it is about 800 calories.
This traditional comfort food is made of rice, macaroni, and lentils topped with tomato sauce, chickpeas, and fried onions.
2. Moms don't really like the word dieting
The second you utter the word diet, a look of disbelief will hit you from afar.
Your mother, grandmother, or aunt will look at you as if you were left starving for years, saying you need to gain weight instead of losing any.
3. 3ozoumat, 3ozoumat all the time
Out of courtesy, you have to be at the table whenever your mother throws a feast - of course, never coinciding with your cheat day.
You either indulge in the delicious heavy food and sabotage your dieting plans, or just stick to it and endure the jokes.
4. Not to mention aunties who don't take no for an answer...
5. We show generosity by sharing sugar-laden oriental treats
...which are simply addictive.
From baklava and lukumi to biscuits filled with dates, you can't just say no to them - whoever is offering them.
6. The sedentary lifestyle isn't helping anyone
After the stress of a long, hard day, most of us prefer staying at home watching television with our family.
And with watching TV comes the unhealthy snacks.
7. The proverbs we use don't make life easier
The Egyptian culture in the past regarded the kersh (belly fat) as a sign of wealth, generosity, and prosperity.
It all shows in our proverb:
"El ragel elly maloush kersh ma yeswash ersh" meaning "A man without belly fat isn't worth a penny."