Over the last 30 years, obesity levels in the UK have more than trebled - putting us at the top of the obesity league in Western Europe. What has led to this increase? What are the main health risks? How can we tackle obesity? Can we prevent more people becoming obese? 

Find out more in the articles in this section. We would welcome your feedback at info@agewatch.org.uk

Are carbs really bad for your diet?

There has been much debate over carbohydrates. Low carbohydrate diets have long been associated with weight loss but should we actually be cutting out carbs or is this just another dieting myth? Why do we need carbohydrates and are they all the same? Find out more 

Is obesity bad for the brain?

We all know the physical health risks of obesity. But could being obese also have an adverse effect on our brain? Can obesity lead to cognitive problems as we get older? And could it increase our risk of developing dementia? Find out more

Junk food syndrome?

What is junk food syndrome and what are the main health risks? Why do people continue to eat junk food even though they know it isn’t good for them? And what can we do about it? Find out more 

Losing weight

There is plenty of research on losing weight effectively. We’ve summarised some top tips from the 2011 BBC programme 10 Things you need to know about losing weight. Some of their findings may surprise you! Find out more

Mindful eating

If you’re trying to lose weight, what is more effective? Regular small meals or fewer larger meals?  What is mindful eating and could it be the answer? Find out more 

Obesity – causes and consequences

What is obesity and how is it caused? What are the main health implications? Find out more 

Preventing obesity

How important are exercise and diet in preventing obesity? Here are our top tips to help you eat healthily and lose weight sensibly. Find out more


In 2014, Action for Sugar was launched in the UK to encourage manufacturers to reduce the amount of sugar added to food and soft drinks. But is sugar really that bad for us or has the risk been exaggerated? And what about natural sugars such as fructose and lactose? Do we need to limit our intake of those as well? Find out more

What causes obesity – the test of time?

What are the main causes of obesity? Is it just eating too much of the wrong food and not exercising enough? Or could genetics, age, sleep and other medical conditions also be responsible? Find out more 

Who’s really responsible for obesity?

Are we to blame for our own obesity? Or could our genetics and parents be to blame? How does our psychological wellbeing influence our relationship with food? Find out more

updated by Stephanie Reynolds om 13/07/2016, next update July 2019