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Key National Obesity Observatory news items are listed here.

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Welsh Child Measurement Programme 2012/13 report published.

To read more about the Child Measurement Programme in Wales and the associated report click here

Sugar Reduction: Responding to the Challenge

Sugar Reduction: Responding to the Challenge This document acknowledges that currently all population groups exceed current UK recommendations on sugar consumption and outlines how PHE will prepare evidence and advice for government on how to reduce sugar intakes. Advice given to government will be informed by the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) report on carbohydrates and health when it is finalised in 2014 and 2015. The draft report is available from the SACN website. 'Sugar reduction: responding to the challenge' includes key actions PHE will take now and in the future to help reduce sugar intakes. It has been informed by two stakeholder events in June 2014 and a paper prepared by the UK Health Forum.

NICE guidance - Managing overweight and obesity in adults

This guideline makes recommendations on the provision of effective multi-component lifestyle weight management services for adults who are overweight or obese (aged 18 and over). It covers weight management programmes, courses, clubs or groups that aim to change someone's behaviour to reduce their energy intake and encourage them to be physically active.

Usually known as 'tier 2' services (see Tiers of weight management services), these programmes are just 1 part of a comprehensive approach to preventing and treating obesity. Clinical judgement will be needed to determine whether they are suitable for people with conditions that increase the risk of, or are associated with, obesity or who have complex needs.

The guideline is for commissioners, health professionals and providers of lifestyle weight management programmes. (For further details, see Who should take action?) The guideline may also be of interest to overweight and obese adults, their families and other members of the public.

National Diet and Nutrition Survey

The National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) is designed to assess the diet, nutrient intake and nutritional status of the general population aged 1.5 years and over living in private households in the UK. The NDNS provides the only source of high quality nationally representative data on the types and quantities of foods consumed by individuals, from which estimates of nutrient intake for the population are derived. Results are used by Government to develop policy and monitor progress on diet and nutrition objectives of UK health departments, for example those set out in the Healthy Lives, Healthy People white paper in England.

This report presents combined results from Years 1, 2, 3 and 4 of the RP (2008/09 - 2011/12) for a sample of the UK population designed to be nationally representative.

National child measurement programme operational guidance

This guidance advises local commissioners and providers of the NCMP on how the programme should be implemented. It defines the statutory surveillance components of the programme and also describes good practice in relation to the non-statutory elements. Any queries can be directed to PHE at

Annual Weigh-In. Progress report by the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges

The Weigh-In marks a year since the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges (AoMRC) launched 'Measuring Up: the medical profession's prescription for the nation's obesity crisis', and rates progress on the 10 recommendations made in the report. Five of the ten recommendations made in Measuring Up are given a red label a year on, indicating cause for concern:

Outcome measures for evaluation of child obesity treatment interventions

Framework of outcome measures recommended for use in the evaluation of childhood obesity treatment interventions: the CoOR framework

Consensus is lacking in determining appropriate outcome measures for assessment of childhood obesity treatments. Inconsistency in the use and reporting of such measures impedes comparisons between treatments and limits consideration of effectiveness. This study aimed to produce a framework of recommended outcome measures: the Childhood obesity treatment evaluation Outcomes Review (CoOR) framework.

Tackling Physical Inactivity - A Coordinated Approach - All Party Commission on Physical Activity

The report calls for the creation of a cross-sector and cross-departmental NAtional Action Plan supported by the leaders of all the three major political parties. Other recommendations include:

  1. Raise awareness by implementing a public health campaign focused on the benefits of physical activity.
  2. Track progress by developing and introducing a standardised measure of physical activity across the UK, and standardised evaluation of investments.
  3. Ensure local and national policy supports the design of physical activity back into everyday life through active travel and leisure (such as walking and cycling to school or work) and making 'active workplaces' the norm.
  4. Make physical activity a lifelong habit by providing early access to positive experiences for children in sports, physical education, and active plat.

To view the report click here.

Refreshed Local Sport Profile tool

A refreshed health section of the local sport profile tool includes data on physically active and inactive adults and obesity levels in adults from the Public Health Outcomes Framework, Public Health Allocations and Premature Mortality at local authority level:

Chief Medical Officer annual report: surveillance volume 2012 published

The Chief Medical Officer's Surveillance report is the first of two volumes of her annual report and is a compendium of data covering a number of public health areas. Key areas of concern for the CMO featuring in this year's report are: Obesity - According to estimates, almost two thirds of adults and one third of children under 18 are overweight or obese. She highlights that, in one study, 77 percent of parents of overweight children did not recognise that their child was overweight. Deafness and blindness and dementia - The GP patient survey shows a greater prevalence of dementia, including Alzheimer's disease, in those with severe vision loss or severe hearing impairment. The CMO highlights the lack of robust data which hampers our understanding of this possible association. The CMO says that investigating this potential link could tell us more about the causes of dementia. Alcohol - In popular culture, drinking alcohol to excess is sometimes portrayed as normal behaviour. An analysis of six weeks of soap operas in the UK in 2010 found 162 instances of characters drinking to excess, with negative consequences rarely shown. In fact, 75 per cent of the population does not consume excessive quantities of alcohol, and the proportion of the population which abstains from alcohol is increasing. Walking and cycling - Safety for pedestrians and cyclists must be improved if we are to encourage people to walk and cycle more and reap the associated health benefits. The risk of serious injury for each kilometre travelled on a bike is 21 times higher than by car. The CMO says that the relative risks of walking and cycling are unacceptably high and must be reduced and that an integrated approach to improving safety for all road users must be taken.

To read the report click here