This 2019 update marks a 1% increase compared to the last report in 2014.
Obesity increases the risk of developing cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes and certain cancers. They therefore constitute a major public health problem, according to a press release issued by the Ministry of Health.
Problematically, the "Trends Report 2006-2018" on Health Behaviour In School-Aged Children (HBSC) revealed that in 2018 19% of adolescents between 11-18 years old were overweight, an increase of 5% compared to 2006.
"At the level of nutrition, it is about improving the dietary practices of populations and ensuring safe food products. At the level of physical activity, the objective is to reduce sedentary life and to strengthen the practices of physical activity favorable to health", explained Minister of Health Paulette Lenert.
Primary obesity and obesity are mainly caused by an unbalanced diet and lack of physical activity. They are therefore avoidable because they are related to an behavior that can be modified.
A common policy to fight obesity and sedentary living
To address this issue, the Ministries of Health, Sports, National Education, Children and Youth and the Ministry of Family Affairs, Integration and the Greater Region have renewed their 2006 inter-ministerial strategy of "Healthy eating, moving more" (GIMB).
The objective of this inter-ministerial collaboration is to promote together balanced nutrition and regular physical activity in order to combat obesity and sedentary issues for the population as a whole. For Lenert, "this inter-ministerial collaboration will allow us to act jointly in different domains and to attract different target populations."