why is obesity a public health issue

1. 1. 1. Obesity is one of the biggest public health issues facing England. Obesity increases the risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, joint disease and some cancers. The National Audit Office (1) clearly highlighted the damaging impact obesity has on health: both the impact on the individual - for example, on health and life expectancy - and the huge financial costs for the NHS and the community as a whole. Obesity is responsible for more than 9,000 premature deaths per year in England (6% of all deaths compared to 10% for smoking). 36 % of cases of hypertension, 47% of cases of type 2 diabetes and 15% of cases of angina are attributable to obesity.


For obese individuals, even a modest weight loss can have substantial benefits. 1. 1. 2. The prevalence of obesity in England has continued to rise among adults, in both sexes. In 1994 14% of men and 17% of women were obese. By 2003 this had risen to 23% in both sexes, almost 1 in 4. 1. 1. 3. The prevalence of obesity among children, aged 2 to 10, rose, between 1995 and 2003, from 10% to 14%. The increase in obesity was most marked among older children aged 8-10, rising from 11% in 1995 to 17% in 2003 (2)
What are the impacts? What is the scale of the problem? What can you do? What is being done to manage the impact? the social marketing programme designed to help families make changes to their lifestyles, so that they can eat well, move more and live longer Planning policy to support physical activity and healthy eating - including active travel planning, consideration of green spaces and availability of land for growing food and number and location of fast food outlets School nurses measuring and monitoring the weight and height of school children.


A weight management programme for children aged 7 -13 and their families which is available in all local authorities in Wales. The National Exercise Referral Scheme which is a 16 week programme that enables sedentary people with a medical condition to become engaged in structured physical activity opportunities supervised by a qualified exercise professional.


Identification of overweight and obesity as part of health checks in primary care. gathers information and evidence to monitor trends in obesity and obesity related health in Wales, such as the national manages the. The Network recognises that many different professionals and sectors have a role to play in improving the nutrition and physical activity levels of the people of Wales. It supports members by providing and improving access to information and by providing a forum for sharing knowledge and good practice, enabling members to learn from each other.


As part of this Network a website (Planning for the Environment, Transport and Health in Wales) has been set up aimed at improving joint working between health professionals and planners; through specialist local public health teams, support is provided to local authorities and health boards to develop assess local needs, develop evidence based local strategies and plans to address obesity and stimulate local action in the form of local projects and programmes; supports the supports workplace health issues through promoting and assisting organisations interested in the and the.

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