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Obesity: the biggest public health challenge facing nursing this century

27 May 2021
Volume 30 · Issue 10

Obesity and overweight is arguably the largest and most complex non-communicable disease of the 21st century, threatening future progress in reducing preventable ill health, premature death and addressing unacceptable health inequalities in the UK. Around two-thirds (63%) of adults are above a healthy weight and, of these, half are living with obesity. In England, one in three children leaving primary school are overweight or living with obesity. Living with overweight or obesity is linked to a wide range of diseases, most commonly type 2 diabetes, hypertension, some cancers, heart disease, stroke and liver disease (Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), 2020; Hancock, 2021). Overweight and obesity terms and body mass index (BMI) ranges are set out in Table 1 and Table 2.

Source: NICE, 2014

Source: NICE, 2014

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