A new report has found that in each of the country’s 26 local authorities, at least 10% of their residents are at risk of being obese, with the worst showing up in the North.
In the city of Limerick, the report found that 20% of residents are obese, and that this number is likely to rise further in the coming years.
It also found that some of Limestone’s poorer communities were particularly at risk.
The report, published by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA), found that the local authority of Cork and Limerick had the highest obesity rate of the counties it covers.
In Limerick City, the obesity rate was 13.5%, with an even higher rate of 27.7% among the local population.
This is despite a recent report finding that the number of people living with a BMI of 30 or above had halved over the last five years, to just 9,500 people.
In Cork, where obesity is at the highest level in the country, the rate of obesity was 9.8%, with 12.7 % of people considered obese.
In Dublin, the number was 10.4%, and 12.9 % among the population.
In Donegal, obesity was 10%, with 13.7 percent of people deemed obese.
In Galway, the local obesity rate, which includes people living in poverty, was 16.5%.
The report also found evidence that in Dublin, it was at 19.3%.
In Waterford, it reached 30.3%, with 6.6% of the population considered obese, compared with 10.2% in Limerick.
The report found an even greater increase in obesity in areas where poverty is the greatest, with a 10.7 percentage point increase in the rate in the past five years.
The research was based on the 2012 Health at Every Size (HAES) data, which shows that the prevalence of obesity in Ireland increased by 8.9% in 2012.
In the year to May 2014, the national obesity rate increased by 11.6%.
It is the first time the data has been released for a county, as well as for local authorities.
The Institute of Economics, which carried out the research, is the UK branch of the European Institute of Social Research (EISR), which is responsible for providing research on health and wellbeing.
The study found that obesity rates were higher in the more deprived areas of the county, with an average of 19.2 percent of residents considered obese in the north and 22.9 percent in the south.
In addition, in most cases, the obese population was concentrated in the areas with the highest poverty levels.
The researchers found that poverty levels were the largest determinant of the obesity rates, with 25% of local residents considered to be living in a household in poverty.
The figure was 14.6 percent in Dublin and 13.6 in Cork.
In a statement, the IEA said that the obesity findings were “deeply concerning” as obesity is linked to poor mental health, and also with increased health risks to the vulnerable population.
“The report also highlights that while obesity is a risk factor for all health conditions, there is a clear link between the obesity levels of local authorities and poverty levels,” the IAE said.
“This is the case irrespective of the size of the locality or the geographical area.”
The Institute added that the research “raises significant questions about the extent to which local authorities can reduce obesity in their communities”.
“These local authorities are not equipped to meet their own needs and should be doing all they can to address their own problems.
This means local authorities must develop better strategies to address obesity and address poverty, and must do so through an integrated approach.”
The report added that in a recent research study, local authorities were found to have the highest rate of child obesity in the whole country, and the highest rates of obesity among those aged 15-24 years.
This report was written by Fiona O’Connell, who has worked with the Institute for Social Research on obesity research.