Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Obesity data: Large figures for Lancs

Excess weight data published earlier this year by Public Health England shows the percentage of adults in Cumbria & Lancashire who are overweight or obese, by local authority.

Excess weight data by local authority, 2012:
Cumbria & Lancashire% Excess weight95% LCI95% UCI
Cumbria68.3%66.5%70.2%
Lancashire64.7%63.4%66.0%
Blackburn with Darwen67.9%64.6%71.1%
Blackpool72.1%67.8%76.4%
For the full set of figures across the country see www.noo.org.uk.

This new data highlights for the first time the variation in the numbers of people who are overweight or obese across the country and in Cumbria & Lancashire, the range is from 64.7% to 72.1%, depending on the local authority. Even in the areas with lowest prevalence of people who are overweight and obese, levels are still high.

Overweight and obesity are complex issues and influenced by a variety of factors, including social and economic deprivation and age. The variation in levels of overweight and obesity across the area, and England as a whole, highlights the extent of the challenge faced by many local authorities.

On the positive side, as shown in previously published data from the Health Survey for England, the rate of increase in overweight and obese adults has slowed in recent years and in children, levels are stabilising. However, welcome though this is, given the health problems associated with being overweight or obese there are no grounds for complacency.

People who are overweight or obese have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease and certain cancers. Excess weight can also affect self-esteem and mental health. Health problems associated with being overweight or obese cost the NHS over £5 billion each year.

Dr Jane Rossini, Cumbria & Lancashire Centre Director at Public Health England, said:
“Public Health England is committed to helping tackle the levels of people who are overweight and obese in Cumbria & Lancashire. With our local authorities and NHS partners we are looking at ways to reduce levels of excess weight in all our communities.”

“There is no silver bullet to reducing obesity. It is an issue that requires action at national, local, family and individual level. Local authorities are ideally placed to develop co-ordinated action across their departments, services and partner organisations to tackle overweight and obesity in the local population.”

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