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Improving Lifestyles, Tackling Obesity: The Health and Economic Impact of Prevention Strategies


  • Franco Sassi


  • Michele Cecchini


  • Jeremy Lauer

    (World Health Organization)

  • Dan Chisholm

    (World Health Organization)


Overweight and obesity rates have been increasing relentlessly over recent decades in all industrialised countries, as well as in many lower income countries. OECD analyses of trends over time support the grim picture drawn in the international literature and so do projections of overweight and obesity rates over the next ten years. The circumstances in which people have been leading their lives over the past 20-30 years, including physical, social and economic environments, have exerted powerful influences on their overall calorie intake, on the composition of their diets and on the frequency and intensity of physical activity at work, at home and during leisure time. Many countries have been concerned not only about the pace of the increase in overweight and obesity, but also about inequalities in their distribution across social groups, particularly by socio-economic status and by ethnic background. Les taux de surpoids et d’obésité ne cessent d’augmenter depuis plusieurs décennies dans tous les pays industrialisés, ainsi que dans beaucoup de pays ayant un revenu plus faible. Les analyses consacrées par l’OCDE aux tendances structurelles confirment le sombre tableau qui a été brossé dans les publications internationales, tout comme le font les prévisions établies sur les taux de surpoids et d’obésité pour les dix prochaines années. Les conditions dans lesquelles vivent les individus depuis vingt ou trente ans, notamment sur le plan matériel, social et économique, ont très fortement influé sur leur ration calorique globale, la composition de leur alimentation, ainsi que la fréquence et l’intensité de leur activité physique au travail, à la maison et pendant les loisirs. Beaucoup de pays sont préoccupés non seulement par le rythme auquel progressent le surpoids et l’obésité, mais aussi par le caractère inégal de leur répartition entre les catégories sociales, en particulier selon la situation socioéconomique et l’origine ethnique.

Suggested Citation

  • Franco Sassi & Michele Cecchini & Jeremy Lauer & Dan Chisholm, 2009. "Improving Lifestyles, Tackling Obesity: The Health and Economic Impact of Prevention Strategies," OECD Health Working Papers 48, OECD Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:oec:elsaad:48-en

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    Cited by:

    1. International Food Policy Research Institute, 2015. "Global Nutrition Report 2015: Actions and accountability to advance nutrition and sustainable development," IFPRI books, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), number 978-0-89629-883-5.
    2. Michele Cecchini & Franco Sassi, 2015. "Preventing Obesity in the USA: Impact on Health Service Utilization and Costs," PharmacoEconomics, Springer, vol. 33(7), pages 765-776, July.
    3. repec:eee:ehbiol:v:26:y:2017:i:c:p:70-85 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Amarpreet Chawla & Chia-Wen Hsiao & Martha Romney & Ricardo Cohen & Francesco Rubino & Philip Schauer & Pierre Cremieux, 2015. "Gap Between Evidence and Patient Access: Policy Implications for Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery in the Treatment of Obesity and its Complications," PharmacoEconomics, Springer, vol. 33(7), pages 629-641, July.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D61 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Allocative Efficiency; Cost-Benefit Analysis
    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • H51 - Public Economics - - National Government Expenditures and Related Policies - - - Government Expenditures and Health
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I18 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Government Policy; Regulation; Public Health

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