Society needs to work together as whole to tackle obesity epidemic
(issued by BMA Scotland Thursday 22 Mar 2012)
In order to tackle the escalating obesity epidemic, GPs have today [Thursday 22 March 2012] voted that all foodstuffs should be clearly labelled with their potential health impact and for nutritional education to be made a compulsory component of the national curriculum in schools.
The doctors, who represent GPs from across Scotland, have called for society as a whole to tackle the obesity timebomb that the UK faces.
Dr John Ip, a GP in Glasgow, who proposed the motion said:
“The direct cost of obesity, to the NHS is estimated at £4 billion. People are overwhelmed by the complexity of information that is available on food. Labelling needs to be clear to allow people the opportunity to make informed decisions about what they eat. Obesity has become a public health priority and the government need to act now to tackle it.”
Dr Dean Marshall, Chairman of the BMA’s Scottish General Practitioners Committee said:
“Obesity is a very serious issue that can lead to a number of life-threatening health problems. Doctors have a role to play in supporting overweight patients and talking about the dangers of obesity but there is a limit to what we can do. The small measures proposed to today would encourage people to make healthy choices and achieve a real improvement in the future health of our children.”
Notes to editor
The motion passed by conference was:
That this conference believes that the obesity epidemic facing the UK needs to be tackled primarily by society as a whole and calls on all UK governments to: