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Welsh girls stand out as shortest and heaviest

Aug 9 2005

Western Mail


WITH her tall, slim figure Catherine Zeta-Jones is a shining example of Welsh beauty, but according to new research Welsh women are more likely to look like her Darling Buds of May co-star Pam Ferris.

In a study of women's body shapes across the country it was found where you live can influence your figure, due to differences in diet, exercise habits and pay packets.

And while Londoners were found to have the biggest breasts, women in Wales were blessed with the largest bottoms.

Just like Welsh actress Pam Ferris, who played Zeta-Jones's mother Ma Larkin in the long-running television show The Darling Buds of May, Welsh women were found to be among the shortest and heaviest in the country.

Unlike Swansea-born Zeta-Jones, who is 5ft 8in, the average height for a Welsh woman is 5ft 3in and the average weight, 11st.

The statistics were the same for Wales, the Midlands and south-west England:

Average height: 5ft 3in

Average weight: 11st/70kg

Average waist size: 83cm/32.5in

Average hip size: 105cm/41.5in

Average bra size: 36B

Researchers from Prima magazine, who carried out the study, said Welsh women's shorter-than-average height and larger bottoms may be because they are more likely to eat sausages, burgers and kebabs. They also eat more biscuits and ice cream than women elsewhere in the country.

However, they are more likely to choose healthier white meat over red meat, and also take more exercise.

In comparison women in the North eat more red meat, fizzy drinks and chips and are the least likely to do any exercise. As a result they have the biggest stomachs in the UK, an average of 33inches and weigh an average 11st. They are also the most likely to be on a diet.

Women in Scotland were the slimmest with an average waist size of 31.5inches. They were also the lightest, weighing just over 10st. And unlike their northern sisters, they were the most active, spending nearly an hour-and-a-half exercising every day. They also defied the common stereotype of Scotland being a nation of unhealthy eaters. Scottish women were found to be the least likely to eat fried food and the most likely to eat healthy white fish.

And while women in the South East and London had the largest breasts, they also had the healthiest diets. They were more likely to eat salad, vegetables and rice. They were the least likely to eat chips with only 61% saying they ate them regularly compared with 72% of northern women. And more than half ate oily fish regularly.

Prima based its findings on research from the Food Standards Agency's National Diet and Nutrition Survey.


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