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Bulletin of the World Health Organization

Print version ISSN 0042-9686

Bull World Health Organ vol.80 n.9 Genebra Sep. 2002 

Childhood obesity control strategy under preparation

Childhood obesity is not confined to rich industrialized countries. In Egypt, for example, surveys of four-year-old children have shown that more than 25% of them are overweight or obese. In Nigeria and Kenya between 5% and 10% fall into these categories. Similar findings are reported from other continents. The strongly suspected causes are reduced physical activity and over-consumption of energy- dense convenience foods. Its effects include risk of type 2 diabetes and its consequences – particularly cardio-vascular disease. The WHO diabetes programme is building a strategy for diet and physical activity, which will be presented at the World Health Assembly in 2004. Further information from Rhys Williams (email: