Currently three in ten people in the UK are obese, many of whom will die needlessly and prematurely from Type 2 Diabetes, Cancers and Heart Disease, yet our Government has repeatedly failed to take any ‘steps’ to address the crisis (in October 2015 David Cameron threw out a recommendation to tax sugar without even reading the report). This is why the average five year old now consumes their body weight in sugar each year and why the death rate from weight-related diseases continues to rise unabated.
There are currently four million children and adults in Britain with diabetes, (nine out of ten have the self-inflicted 'type 2 diabetes' kind), which can lead to blindness, loss of a limb, or kidney failure. Last year 24,000 died from the disease.
Obesity causes breast (after menopause), prostrate, pancreatic, oesophagus, endometrium, kidney, thyroid, gallbladder, colon and rectum cancers. An estimated 2.5 million people live with the disease in the UK and in 2012 it was responsible for 161,823 deaths.
Last year there were 2.3 million people living in the UK with Chronic Heart Disease and another 2 million people with angina (the most common symptom) suffering 103,000 heart attacks and 152,000 strokes, resulting in more than 41,000 deaths in the UK.
Obesity now costs the UK’s economy £47bn a year (up from £43bn in 2012), which is more than armed violence, war and terrorism put together - and it’s all caused by the food we buy from supermarkets and fast food restaurants. Given the scale of the problem and our government’s refusal to intervene, experts predict that by 2035, 75% of the population will be obese, resulting in 4 million with type 2 diabetes, 700,000 new cancer cases and millions more suffering from heart disease.
The UK's obesity problem is a 'huge' (pardon another pun) burden on our society and one which we will not be able to resource for much longer. If we don't act now, then it will bankrupt first the NHS and then the country.