Politicians in Barcelona have been accused of being 'Fat Cats' but not for the usual reasons, according to a report in Catalan daily La Vanguardia.
A study by the Spanish Society for the Study of Obesity (SEEDO) has revealed that 79.7% of the men in Catalonia's parliament are at serious risk of heart disease because of their weight, compared with only 25.6% of the women.
Doctor Xavier Formiguera weighed and measured the waists of 66 of the 135 parliamentary members as the jumping-off-point for further research.
"The study allows us to lay the groundwork for more substantial research that we will undertake in the coming months to track the members of parliament from their arrival in government to the end of their time in office," explained Dr. Formiguera.
"We hope that other chambers of government will become aware of this experience to spread awareness of the serious problem of obesity in Spain and to curb its growth, starting with the political class who should set an example to other citizens," he said.
Formiguera added: "Although in theory they are well informed about the fight against excess weight, this study shows that they suffer from the same problems as the rest of the population."
"The trend needs to be changed because it's up to them to create the policies to combat obesity."
Spain's obesity crisis has been in the spotlight after a study reported by ABC newspaper revealed that almost 30% of Spanish children between the ages of 3 and 12 are overweight.
Spain has been ranked as one of the European countries most affected by the obesity epidemic, a trend which, according to the World Health Organization, is likely to get worse in the coming years.