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Report Shows Europe’s Potential to Reverse Obesity Epidemic

May 4, 2022 by Alexa Hornbeck
Report Shows Europe’s Potential to Reverse Obesity Epidemic
Farm in Amsterdam (Photo by 3345557 via Pixabay)

This week the World Health Organization held a media briefing to share findings from the 2022 WHO European Regional Obesity Report, which shows that Europe has the potential to reverse its obesity epidemic. 

The findings published Tuesday show that 59% of adults and almost one in three children are overweight or living with obesity across Europe. Recent estimates suggest the health issue can cause about 1.2 million deaths annually. 

The report also finds that people who are overweight or obese have been disproportionately affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Not only were they more likely to suffer severe illness and outcomes after contracting the disease, but they also experienced disruptions in treatment.


To reverse the obesity epidemic, the WHO outlines policy interventions that target environmental and commercial determinants of poor diet at the population level. The agency also suggests ways to achieve environmentally sustainable food systems. 



These policy recommendations include implementing fiscal interventions like taxation on sugar-sweetened beverages, subsidies for healthy food, restrictions on the marketing of unhealthy food to children, and improvements in obesity and overweight management services in primary health care to improve diet and physical activity. 

Alexa can be reached at [email protected]

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