Seventy Five percent (75%) of UK population are either overweight or obese. These statistics, reported by Dame Sally Davies, (England's Chief Medical Officer (CMO)) in her annual report on the state of health are a major cause for concern. The CMO pointed out that many people did not recognise they had a problem. This is particularly true amongst men with 52% of overweight men thinking they are about the right weight.
The other problem with this situation is that it is now normal to be overweight in UK society so this situation is not perceived as being exceptional. Decades ago there was a degree of social stigma attached to being overweight or obese. Whether you agree or not this meant that people felt a degree of pressure to lose weight. Professor Boyd Swinburn coined a term "the runaway weight gain train" and one of the brakes on the train was social pressure. With the current situation this has been removed and so the weight gain train can accelerate quicker and is harder to stop. The cost of Overweight and obesity to the NHS is over £5bn each year and is entirely preventable.
The question has to be "how much longer can we allow this to accelerate before it brings the NHS to a grinding halt"?
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