Changing Health Behaviour: Obesity and Overweight Issues

Brenda van de Leemkolk

Scotland has some of the highest rates of obesity and diet-related diseases (e.g. heart disease) worldwide. This briefing overviews research on the causes, consequences, prevention and methods for intervention to enhance our understanding of this public health issue.
Behaviour Change, Health Promotion, Obesity, Being Overweight, Public Health
Key Points
  • Obesity and being overweight are severe public health issues that call for effective prevention and behaviour change.
  • Obesity and being overweight not only have negative effects on the physical health of the individual but are also associated with prejudice and discrimination.
  • Changing lifestyles and habits is challenging and research on successful methods is needed.
  • Besides individual interventions, it is necessary to reshape our living environment from one that promotes weight gain to one that supports healthy choices.
  • Development of a national strategy and policy focused on behaviour change and environmental change to address the issue of overweight and obesity is needed.