Study Suggests Most Obesity Policies Are Ineffective

A study published today online in Current Opinion in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Obesity suggests the policies most often implemented to curb rising rates of obesity — encouraging breast feeding, changing school lunches, limiting access to sugar sweetened beverages, encouraging physical activity, changing the composition of competitive foods, affecting food advertising directed at children and collecting BMI, as well as policies more specifically targeted to adults such as encouraging workplace wellness programs, including the nutrition label on packaged foods, and adding caloric information to restaurant menus — have little to no effect on obesity rates. The study’s authors, Morgan Downey, Downey Obesity Report, and Chris Still, Geisinger Institute, suggest interventions need to accommodate the multifactorial aspects of obesity. According to Downey, “The continuing epidemic and lack of effectiveness of current treatments would indicate a time for critical reappraisal of strategies on prevention and treatment.”

You can read the abstract of the article here. The study complements an earlier review done by Jeff Mechanick in Endocrine Practice. You can review the abstract of this study here.