• Overview
  • Obesity prevalence
  • Trends over time
  • Population breakdowns
  • Drivers
  • Comorbidities
  • Health systems
  • Actions
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Obesity prevalence

Adults, 2017

Survey type:Measured
Age:18+
Sample size:6833
Area covered:National
References:Executive Summary. Oman National Non-Communicable Disease & their Risk Factors Survey 2017 https://mohcsr.gov.om/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Executive-Summary_NCDsurvey2017_En.pdf (last accessed 17.10.19)
Notes:STEPS
Unless otherwise noted, overweight refers to a BMI between 25kg and 29.9kg/m², obesity refers to a BMI greater than 30kg/m².

Women, 2016-2017

Survey type:Measured
Age:15-49
Sample size:4159
Area covered:National
References:Oman National Nutrition Survey 2016-2017 http://groundworkhealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/ONNS_Report_2017.pdf (Accessed 04.09.20)
Notes:Omani citizens only.
Unless otherwise noted, overweight refers to a BMI between 25kg and 29.9kg/m², obesity refers to a BMI greater than 30kg/m².

Adults, 2008

Survey type:Measured
Age:18+
Sample size:4717
Area covered:National
References:Riyami AA, Elaty MAA, Morsi M et al Oman World Health Survey: Part 1 - Methodology, Sociodemographic Profile and Epidemiology of Non-Communicable Diseases in Oman. Oman Medical Journal 2012; 27(5):425-443
Unless otherwise noted, overweight refers to a BMI between 25kg and 29.9kg/m², obesity refers to a BMI greater than 30kg/m².

Adults, 2000

Survey type:Measured
Age:20+
Sample size:6400
Area covered:National
References:Al-Lawati JA and Jousilahti PJ. (2004). Prevalence and 10 year secular trend of obesity in Oman. Saudi Medical Journal 25: 346 - 351.
Unless otherwise noted, overweight refers to a BMI between 25kg and 29.9kg/m², obesity refers to a BMI greater than 30kg/m².

Adults, 1991

Survey type:Measured
Age:20+
Sample size:5086
References:Al-Lawati JA, Jousilahti PJ. Prevalence and 10year secular trend of obesity in Oman. Saudi Med J 2004;25:346-351
Unless otherwise noted, overweight refers to a BMI between 25kg and 29.9kg/m², obesity refers to a BMI greater than 30kg/m².

Children, 2015

Survey type:Self-reported
Age:13-17
References:Global School-based Student Health Survey (GSHS), available at https://www.cdc.gov/gshs/countries/index.htm (last accessed 28.04.20)
Notes:WHO cutoffs.
Cutoffs:WHO

Overweight/obesity by age

Women, 2016-2017

Survey type:Measured
Sample size:4159
Area covered:National
References:Oman National Nutrition Survey 2016-2017 http://groundworkhealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/ONNS_Report_2017.pdf (Accessed 04.09.20)
Notes:Omani citizens only.
Unless otherwise noted, overweight refers to a BMI between 25kg and 29.9kg/m², obesity refers to a BMI greater than 30kg/m².

Overweight/obesity by socio-economic group

Women, 2016-2017

Survey type:Measured
Age:15-49
Sample size:4159
Area covered:National
References:Oman National Nutrition Survey 2016-2017 http://groundworkhealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/ONNS_Report_2017.pdf (Accessed 04.09.20)
Notes:Omani citizens only.
Unless otherwise noted, overweight refers to a BMI between 25kg and 29.9kg/m², obesity refers to a BMI greater than 30kg/m².

Insufficient physical activity

Adults, 2016

References:Guthold R, Stevens GA, Riley LM, Bull FC. Worldwide trends in insufficient physical activity from 2001 to 2016: a pooled analysis of 358 population-based surveys with 1.9 million participants. Lancet 2018 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(18)30357-7

Men, 2016

References:Guthold R, Stevens GA, Riley LM, Bull FC. Worldwide trends in insufficient physical activity from 2001 to 2016: a pooled analysis of 358 population-based surveys with 1.9 million participants. Lancet 2018 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(18)30357-7

Women, 2016

References:Guthold R, Stevens GA, Riley LM, Bull FC. Worldwide trends in insufficient physical activity from 2001 to 2016: a pooled analysis of 358 population-based surveys with 1.9 million participants. Lancet 2018 http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2214-109X(18)30357-7

Children, 2010

Age:11-17
References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A893?lang=en
Notes:% of school going adolescents not meeting WHO recommendations on Physical Activity for Health, i.e. doing less than 60 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity daily.
Definitions:% Adolescents insufficiently active (age standardised estimate)

Boys, 2010

Age:11-17
References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A893?lang=en
Notes:% of school going adolescents not meeting WHO recommendations on Physical Activity for Health, i.e. doing less than 60 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity daily.
Definitions:% Adolescents insufficiently active (age standardised estimate)

Girls, 2010

Age:11-17
References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A893?lang=en
Notes:% of school going adolescents not meeting WHO recommendations on Physical Activity for Health, i.e. doing less than 60 minutes of moderate- to vigorous-intensity physical activity daily.
Definitions:% Adolescents insufficiently active (age standardised estimate)

Average daily frequency of carbonated soft drink consumption

Children, 2009-2015

Survey type:Measured
Age:12-17
References:Beal et al. (2019). Global Patterns of Adolescent Fruit, Vegetable, Carbonated Soft Drink, and Fast-food consumption: A meta-analysis of global school-based student health surveys. Food and Nutrition Bulletin. https://doi.org/10.1177/0379572119848287 sourced from Food Systems Dashboard http://www.foodsystemsdashboard.org/food-system

Estimated per-capita fruit intake

Adults, 2017

Survey type:Measured
Age:25+
References:Global Burden of Disease, the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation http://ghdx.healthdata.org/
Definitions:Estimated per-capita fruit intake (g/day)

Prevalence of less-than-daily fruit consumption

Children, 2008-2015

Survey type:Measured
Age:12-17
References:Global School-based Student Health Surveys. Beal et al (2019). Global Patterns of Adolescent Fruit, Vegetable, Carbonated Soft Drink, and Fast-food consumption: A meta-analysis of global school-based student health surveys. Food and Nutrition Bulletin. https://doi.org/10.1177/0379572119848287. Sourced from Food Systems Dashboard http://www.foodsystemsdashboard.org/food-system
Definitions:Prevalence of less-than-daily fruit consumption (% less-than-daily fruit consumption)

Prevalence of less-than-daily vegetable consumption

Children, 2008-2015

Survey type:Measured
Age:12-17
References:Beal et al. (2019). Global Patterns of Adolescent Fruit, Vegetable, Carbonated Soft Drink, and Fast-food consumption: A meta-analysis of global school-based student health surveys. Food and Nutrition Bulletin. https://doi.org/10.1177/0379572119848287 sourced from Food Systems Dashboard http://www.foodsystemsdashboard.org/food-system
Definitions:Prevalence of less-than-daily vegetable consumption (% less-than-daily vegetable consumption)

Average weekly frequency of fast food consumption

Children, 2009-2015

Age:12-17
References:Beal et al. (2019). Global Patterns of Adolescent Fruit, Vegetable, Carbonated Soft Drink, and Fast-food consumption: A meta-analysis of global school-based student health surveys. Food and Nutrition Bulletin. https://doi.org/10.1177/0379572119848287 sourced from Food Systems Dashboard http://www.foodsystemsdashboard.org/food-system

Estimated per-capita processed meat intake

Adults, 2017

Survey type:Measured
Age:25+
References:Global Burden of Disease, the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation http://ghdx.healthdata.org/
Definitions:Estimated per-capita processed meat intake (g per day)

Estimated per-capita whole grains intake

Adults, 2017

Survey type:Measured
Age:25+
References:Global Burden of Disease, the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation http://ghdx.healthdata.org/
Definitions:Estimated per-capita whole grains intake (g/day)

Mental health - depression disorders

Adults, 2015

References:Prevalence data from Global Burden of Disease study 2015 (http://ghdx.healthdata.org) published in: Depression and Other Common Mental Disorders: Global Health Estimates. Geneva:World Health Organization; 2017. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.
Definitions:% of population with depression disorders

Mental health - anxiety disorders

Adults, 2015

References:Prevalence data from Global Burden of Disease study 2015 (http://ghdx.healthdata.org) published in: Depression and Other Common Mental Disorders: Global Health Estimates. Geneva:World Health Organization; 2017. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.
Definitions:% of population with anxiety disorders

Oesophageal cancer

Men, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, oesophagus, adults ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Women, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, oesophagus, adults ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Breast cancer

Women, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, breast, females, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Colorectal cancer

Men, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, colorectum, adults, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Women, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, colorectum, adults, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Pancreatic cancer

Men, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, pancreas, adults, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Women, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, pancreas, adults, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Gallbladder cancer

Men, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, gallbladder, adults, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Women, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, gallbladder, adults, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Kidney cancer

Men, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, kidney, adults, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Women, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, kidney, adults, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Cancer of the uterus

Women, 2018

Age:20+
References:Global Cancer Observatory, Cancer incidence rates http://gco.iarc.fr/ (last accessed 30th June 2020)
Definitions:Estimated age-standardized incidence rates (World) in 2018, cervix uteri, females, ages 20+. ASR (World) per 100,000

Raised blood pressure

Adults, 2015

References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A875?lang=en
Definitions:Age Standardised estimated % Raised blood pressure 2015 (SBP>=140 OR DBP>=90).

Men, 2015

References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A875?lang=en
Definitions:Age Standardised estimated % Raised blood pressure 2015 (SBP>=140 OR DBP>=90).

Women, 2015

References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A875?lang=en
Definitions:Age Standardised estimated % Raised blood pressure 2015 (SBP>=140 OR DBP>=90).

Raised cholesterol

Adults, 2008

References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A885
Definitions:% Raised total cholesterol (>= 5.0 mmol/L) (age-standardized estimate).

Men, 2008

References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A885
Definitions:% Raised total cholesterol (>= 5.0 mmol/L) (age-standardized estimate).

Women, 2008

References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A885
Definitions:% Raised total cholesterol (>= 5.0 mmol/L) (age-standardized estimate).

Raised fasting blood glucose

Men, 2014

References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A869?lang=en
Definitions:Age Standardised % raised fasting blood glucose (>= 7.0 mmol/L or on medication).

Women, 2014

References:Global Health Observatory data repository, World Health Organisation, http://apps.who.int/gho/data/node.main.A869?lang=en
Definitions:Age Standardised % raised fasting blood glucose (>= 7.0 mmol/L or on medication).

Diabetes prevalence

Adults, 2017

References:Reproduced with kind permission of IDF, International Diabetes Federation. IDF Diabetes Atlas, 8th edition. Brussels, Belgium: International Diabetes Federation, 2017. http://www.diabetesatlas.org
Definitions:Diabetes age-adjusted comparative prevalence (%).

Health systems

Economic classification: High Income

Health systems summary

Oman is considered to have a universal health care system provided for by the Ministry of Health. Omani citizens (and expatriates who work in the public sector) have access to free at point of service care. Most non-Omani citizens have employer-provided health insurance and those that do not tend to pay for subsidised care.

Over recent years, government healthcare spending in Oman has risen dramatically, leading to the introduction of small, nominal fees for some appointments to help reduce demand and improve finances. Currently, out of pocket expenditure is estimated at 11.6% of total health expenditure. It is anticipated that there will eventually be the introduction of a national health insurance programme that will be administered by the Government. Plans for this were outlined in ‘Health Vision 2050’.

Indicators

Where is the country’s government in the journey towards defining ‘Obesity as a disease’?Defined as disease
Where is the country’s healthcare provider in the journey towards defining ‘Obesity as a disease’?Defined as disease
Is there specialist training available dedicated to the training of health professionals to prevent, diagnose, treat and manage obesity?Some progress
Have any taxes or subsidies been put in place to protect/assist/inform the population around obesity?Yes
Are there adequate numbers of trained health professionals in specialties relevant to obesity in urban areas?Yes
Are there adequate numbers of trained health professionals in specialties relevant to obesity in rural areas?Some progress
Are there any obesity-specific recommendations or guidelines published for adults?No
Are there any obesity-specific recommendations or guidelines published for children?No
In practice, how is obesity treatment largely funded?Government

Perceived barriers to treatment

  • Poor health literacy & behaviour
  • Lack of financial investment & funding for coverage
  • Failure to recognise or accept all treatment options
  • Poor availability of all treatment options
  • Stigma
  • Cultural norm and traditions
  • Lack of support

Summary of stakeholder feedback

Stakeholders reported that the Ministry of Health is making efforts to address obesity. This includes investment in campaigns, initiatives and community programmes around healthy lifestyles. It was noted however, that there is more work to be done because obesity is still rising. Stakeholders felt that obesity could be better prevented by increasing opportunities for physical activity, increased regulation of unhealthy foods and more cross-sectoral collaboration.

In theory, the whole spectrum of obesity treatment is covered by government funding (for Omani citizens and expatriates working in public sector), apart from some medications. However, stakeholders reported long waiting lists for treatment, particularly in tertiary care at the sole tertiary obesity clinic at the National Diabetes and Endocrine Centre (NDEC). Despite this, it appears people go for government funded treatment unless they can afford to pay out of pocket or they have coverage through private insurance.

Oman has a national screening programme for those over 40 years of age. Stakeholders reported that when someone is screened and found to have a high BMI they are typically referred onto a dietician (and possibly a physician for medication). Other than screening, stakeholders claim that people only enter the system when they have co-morbidities, but even then they are not seen by truly multi-disciplinary teams at primary and secondary care. The sole tertiary centre (NDEC) only accepts referrals for those with a BMI of 40 with comorbidities.

There are reported to be no guidelines in place in Oman for the treatment and management of obesity. There is no widespread obesity training in place, but the NDEC is leading on providing training so that more obesity care can be provided at primary and secondary care level. This includes the training necessary to open 18 obesity clinics with multi-disciplinary teams across Oman and an obesity management fellowship.

Based on interviews/survey returns from 6 stakeholders

Last updated: June 2020

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Actions

Energy & Soft Drink Tax

Energy drinks taxed at rate of 100%_x000D__x000D_ Soft drinks taxed at rate of 50%_x000D__x000D_ _x000D__x000D_ Came into force June 2019

Categories:Taxation/Subsidies on Food or Beverages or law relating to public health
Year(s):2019 (ongoing)
Target age group:Adults and children
Organisation:OMAN Ministry of Health
Linked document:Download linked document
References:Information provided with kind permission of WHO Global database on the Implementation of Nutrition Action (GINA): https://extranet.who.int/nutrition/gina/en

National Nutrition Strategy - Strategic Study 2014-2050

One of the objectives within this strategy is to reduce the prevalence of overweight and obesity to < 5% of the population through exercise and a balanced diet of fresh vegetables and fruits.

Categories:Evidence of Nutritional or Health Strategy/ Guidelines/Policy/Action plan
Year(s):2014-2050
Target age group:Adults and children
Organisation:Department of Nutrition Ministry of Health Sultanate of Oman
Linked document:Download linked document
References:Information provided with kind permission of WHO Global database on the Implementation of Nutrition Action (GINA): https://extranet.who.int/nutrition/gina/en

The Omani Guide to Healthy Eating

This is a set of dietary guidelines to encourage healthy eating in Oman.

Categories:Evidence of Nutritional or Health Strategy/ Guidelines/Policy/Action plan
Year(s):2009 (ongoing)
Target age group:Adults and children
Organisation:Department of Nutrition, Ministry of Health
Linked document:Download linked document
References:The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. http://www.fao.org/nutrition/education/food-based-dietary-guidelines/regions/countries/oman/en/ (last accessed 2 March 2016)

No actions could be found for the above criteria.

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