Regional Atlas: WHO European region
Welcome to World Obesity’s 2021 ‘WHO European Region, Obesity Data Atlas’, where we highlight and share the latest obesity-related data available for the region.
Overweight and obesity is now a global challenge. In 2016, 1.9 billion adults and 337 million children were estimated to be living with overweight and obesity. For children and adolescents, rates are rising fastest in low- and middle-income countries.
As a major predictor of severe COVID-19 disease, the COVID-19 pandemic has shone a spotlight on obesity. Now more than ever, we realise the importance of the interrelationship between our health, the environment and the political climate. Better data and evidence will help us connect these dots.
This atlas brings together the latest obesity-related data for the WHO European region. This includes obesity prevalence data, trend data, and data on drivers and common comorbidities. National obesity-related policies and guidelines such as fiscal policies, marketing policies and treatment recommendations can also be found in this Atlas.
Obesity data are often collected in standardised surveys repeated around the globe. Examples of this include WHO’s STEPwise and Global School-based Student health surveys and the U.S. Agency for International Development’s Demographic and Health Surveys. Many countries also conduct regular national health surveys to monitor their population’s health. For the WHO European region, in particular, standardised cross-national data is sourced from the EUROSTAT database, the Health Behaviour in School-aged Children study, and the WHO European Childhood Obesity Surveillance Initiative. There are also several national health surveys undertaken regularly.
We thank all the researchers, funders and participants who contribute to data collection efforts. Better data and evidence allows us to understand the scope of the challenge, monitor trends, and allocate resources. This atlas is for everyone, including students, researchers, health care professionals, advocates and policymakers.
We hope you find this Atlas helpful for everyone working to reduce, prevent and treat obesity in your region.
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