Despite progress in recent years, obesity remains a major public health issue. It is a substantial risk factor for deaths related to noncommunicable diseases, including cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and a range of cancers. It also subjects people to bias and discrimination that exacerbate poor health. The problem is increasing. Yet the global economy could save as much as $2.2trn over the next 40 years (mainly by avoiding medical costs) if obesity were to remain at the level of 2019 and not get worse. Yet the causes of obesity are complex and difficult to tackle. Lifestyle changes are only part of the answer. A broader approach across public health, medical care, and public policy is needed. How can leaders push for improved research, prevention, treatment, and management? What kind of investment is required?
The webinar programmed by Economist Impact and sponsored by Obesity Policy Engagement Network* (OPEN), witnessed first-hand insights and guidance on how to respond to obesity.