Background: Data from the 2012 Health Survey for England show that, in 2010, 26% of men and women were obese, and that 42% of men and 32% of women were overweight. It is estimated that, by 2050, the majority of Britain’s population will be so categorised.
Approaches to intervention: In the UK, the costs of dealing with the adverse consequences of obesity have been estimated to be £5 billion per annum, a figure that will double by 2050.
A Royal College of Physician’s working party has made several key recommendations, including the designation of a “strong but politically independent” person in a government role to coordinate the work of departments that could have an impact on obesity, and drive a coordinated strategy to counter obesity.
Conclusions: Prevalence of obesity is increasing and is associated with premature cardiovascular and other diseases. We need to increase investment in obesity research and better educate healthcare professionals in the provision of care for individuals with overweight or obesity issues.