January10–16

National Obesity Awareness Week – January 10-16, 2023

National Obesity Awareness Week in the U.K. is observed in January and takes place from January 10 to 16 this year. Obesity affects more and more children, adults, and even pets in the U.k. each year. By 2050, 50% of the population could be obese. Fighting obesity can seem daunting. But the good news is it’s not impossible. National Obesity Awareness Week aims to demystify obesity and practice easy ways to prevent it. Eat right, stay fit, and lose weight — that’s the mantra. When a nation comes together, the battle is already half won.

History of National Obesity Awareness Week

It’s fitting (and maybe a bit brutal) that National Obesity Awareness Week happens so soon after Christmas. The last thing we need are reminders of excessive holiday indulgence. But given the rising rates of obesity in the U.K., the timing seems perfect. There’s no better time than the New Year to eat healthier and get fit.

Obesity is a serious challenge, not just in the U.K. but internationally too. We’re not moving as much as we used to. We make things worse by eating processed food or takeaway. What’s more, we subject our pets to unhealthy lifestyles as well. More than 75% of pets in the U.K. are obese.

Being obese costs you, both literally and figuratively. Often, the damages to health and well-being can be irreparable. Taxpayers pay a whopping £6b annually for obesity-related conditions like heart disease and diabetes. For perspective, the amount is much more than that spent on the judicial system, fire, and police departments.

National Obesity Awareness Week in the U.K. encourages people to “turn obesity around.” It’s a week of awareness on obesity and its dangerous impact on people’s lives and society at large. Authorities share resources and tips on how people can reverse their lifestyles. The most significant changes begin with small steps; cooking healthy meals, exercising more often, and getting enough sleep each night. What also helps tremendously is unplugging from devices. Spend time outdoors instead of vegetating in front of a screen. And remember to switch off all electronic devices at bedtime.

National Obesity Awareness Week timeline

1300 — 1600
Voluptuousness is Attractive

The ideal woman in Renaissance Art and literature is curvy, perhaps even overweight by modern-day standards.

1700s
When Weight Gain is A Good Thing

Technological advances make food supply abundant, increasing human longevity and body size.

1945
More Food, Less Activity

Food becomes more accessible, and obesity rises worldwide due to sedentary lifestyles.

2021
Obesity and Cardiovascular Disease

The American Heart Association publishes a study linking obesity to higher risks of coronary artery disease.  

National Obesity Awareness Week FAQs

What month is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month?

National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month is in September. The month promotes healthy growth and obesity prevention in children.

Which foods can help prevent obesity?

Eating well is the key to preventing obesity and related cardiovascular diseases. Cook healthier food instead of ordering take-out. Incorporate vegetables, whole grains, fruits, beans, nuts, and seeds into your diet. 

Who is most at risk of obesity in the U.K.?

Men aged between 45 and 74 face a higher risk of obesity. Studies also show that women between 65 and 74 years tend to become overweight. 

How to Observe National Obesity Awareness Week

  1. Make fitness a priority

    Whether it’s crushing HIIT, brisk walking, swimming, or dancing — go ahead and make it your own. Just start. Remember that consistency will help you reach those fitness goals.

  2. Set realistic goals

    Most people reach too high and set themselves up for disappointment. Keep your goals realistic. Aim to reduce food intake gradually and work your way up as you go along. 

  3. Swap out the unhealthy stuff

    Substitute sugary foods with fruit and snacks for vegetables. Some fruit with homemade peanut butter can help when the sugar cravings kick in. Love salty snacks? Bake veggies till crispy and dip them in hummus. 

5 Facts About Nutrition That Will Blow Your Mind

  1. Meal size and frequency

    Studies show that meal size and frequency have no impact on weight loss.

  2. Stop demonizing egg yolks

    Egg yolks are super nutritious and do not cause high cholesterol.

  3. Low fat doesn’t mean healthy

    Since low-fat foods don’t taste as good, most manufacturers add sugar and other additives to enhance the flavor.

  4. Pay attention to your gut

    Feeding your gut microbes with lots of fiber is crucial for good health.

  5. Calorie counting isn’t everything

    It works for most people, but you can also lose weight through other healthy habits — like eating more protein. 

Why National Obesity Awareness Week is Important

  1. Making healthy choices easier

    National Obesity Awareness Week simplifies staying fit and healthy. Since everyone's in it together, the road ahead seems much easier.

  2. Access to tools and resources

    From guidance on healthy eating to staying motivated — it’s a week of incredible learning. Everyone has access to informative health resources, whether online or in-person.

  3. Drops in the bucket

    The week creates lifelong champions of public health. If you combine individual efforts, the impact as a group can be astounding.

National Obesity Awareness Week dates

YearDateDay
2022January 10Monday
2023January 10Tuesday
2024January 10Wednesday
2025January 10Friday
2026January 10Saturday

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