Some of the sources referred to in this publication are National Statistics. National Statistics are produced to high professional standards set out in the Code of Practice for Statistics. The United Kingdom Statistics Authority (UKSA) assesses all National Statistics for compliance with the Code of Practice.
Some of the statistics included in this publication are not National Statistics and are included here to provide a fuller picture; some of these are Official Statistics, whilst others are neither National Statistics or Official Statistics. Those which are Official Statistics should still conform to the Code of Practice for Statistics, although this is not a statutory requirement.
Those that are neither National Statistics or Official Statistics may not conform to the Code of Practice for Statistics. Unless otherwise stated, all sources contained within this publication are considered robust.
1. Sources used in this report
1.1 The Active Lives Survey - Sport England
The Active Lives Survey (ALS) published by Sport England provides information on participation in sport and recreation. It was conducted for the first time in 2015/16 and replaces the Active People Survey. The survey classifies activity level into active, fairly active and inactive based on the number of minutes of moderate intensity equivalent (MIE) physical activity.
The Active Lives Survey publication is an Official Statistic.
1.2 Family Food - Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)
Family Food is an annual publication which provides detailed statistical information on purchased quantities, expenditure and nutrient intakes derived from both household and eating out food and drink. Data is collected for a sample of households in the United Kingdom using self-reported diaries of all purchases, including food eaten out, over a two-week period. Where possible, quantities are recorded in the diaries but otherwise estimated. Energy and nutrient intakes are calculated using standard nutrient composition data for each of some 500 types of food. Current estimates are based on data collected in the ‘Family Food Module of the Living Costs and Food Survey’.
The Family Food publication is a National Statistic.
1.3 Health at a Glance - Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
Health at a Glance presents a set of key indicators of health status, determinants of health, health care resources and activities, quality of care, health expenditure and financing in OECD countries.
1.4 Health Survey for England - NHS Digital
The Health Survey for England series was designed to monitor trends in the nation’s health, to estimate the proportion of people in England who have specified health conditions, and to estimate the prevalence of certain risk factors and combinations of risk factors associated with these conditions. The surveys provide regular information that cannot be obtained from other sources on a range of aspects concerning the public’s health and many of the factors that affect health.
Each survey in the series includes core questions and measurements (such as blood pressure, height and weight, and analysis of blood and saliva samples), as well as modules of questions on topics that vary from year to year.
The Health Survey for England has been carried out since 1993.
The Health Survey for England is a National Statistic.
1.5 Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) - NHS Digital
Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) processes over 125 million admitted patient, outpatient and accident and emergency records each year.
HES is a data warehouse containing details of all admissions, outpatient appointments and A&E attendances at NHS hospitals in England. This data is collected during a patient's time at hospital and is submitted to allow hospitals to be paid for the care they deliver. HES data is designed to enable secondary use, that is use for non-clinical purposes, of this administrative data.
It is a records-based system that covers all NHS trusts in England, including acute hospitals, primary care trusts and mental health trusts. HES information is stored as a large collection of separate records, one for each period of care, in a secure data warehouse.
A detailed record is collected for each 'episode' of admitted patient care delivered in England, either by NHS hospitals or delivered in the independent sector but commissioned by the NHS.
Admitted patient care data is available for every financial year from 1989-90 onwards. HES data is now collected monthly.
Hospital Episode Statistics, Admitted Patient Care Activity publications are national statistics.
1.6 National Child Measurement Programme - NHS Digital
Established in 2005/06, the National Child Measurement Programme (NCMP) for England records height and weight measurements of children in state-maintained schools in reception (aged 4–5 years) and year 6 (aged 10–11 years). However, 2006/07 is the first year that the data were considered an acceptable quality although obesity prevalence for year 6 children between 2006/07 and 2008/09 is felt to be an underestimate due to low participation. The programme provides robust data for the child excess weight indicators in the Public health Outcomes Framework, and is a key element of the Government’s approach to tackling child obesity.
Public Health England (PHE) has responsibility for national oversight of the programme, and on its behalf, the central collation and analysis of the NCMP data is coordinated by NHS Digital. Local Authorities have a statutory responsibility to deliver the National Child Measurement Programme.
The National Child Measurement Programme is a National Statistic.
1.7 National Diet Nutrition Survey - Public Health England
The National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) is designed to assess the diet, nutrient intake and nutritional status of the general population aged 1½ years and over living in private households in the UK.
1.8 National Travel Survey - Department for Transport
The National Travel Survey is a household survey of personal travel by residents of England travelling within Great Britain. This is a long-term survey that began in 1988, with data collected annually in two ways: from an interview with household members, and from trip diaries which respondents keep for 7-day period. All trips, stages and distance statistics are based on the trip diary. In 2016, around 7,000 households and 18,000 individuals took part.
Data from the National Travel Survey feeds into the report ‘Walking and cycling statistics, England’ also produced by the Department for Transport. This presents information on walking and cycling in England.
The National Travel Survey is a National Statistic.
1.9 Prescription Data - NHS Digital
The prescription data included in this report combines GP prescriptions data, taken from Prescribing Analysis and Cost Tool (PACT), and hospital prescriptions data, taken from Prescription Cost Analysis (PCA) system.
Prescriptions are written on a prescription form known as FP10 and each single item on the form is counted as a prescription item. Net Ingredient Cost (NIC) is the basic cost of a drug. It does not take account of discounts, dispensing costs, fees or prescription charges income.
PCA data are national statistics.
2. Other resources related to obesity, physical activity and diet
Annual Reports of the Chief Medical Officer
These reports provide an important record of the nation’s health and the major challenges faced by government in tackling the main health problems. The latest reports are available in the links below:
Chief Medical Officer's annual report 2014: Women’s health
Chief Medical Officer's annual report 2015: Health of the baby boomer generation
Association for the Study of Obesity
The Association for the Study of Obesity (ASO) was founded in 1967 and is the UK's foremost charitable organisation dedicated to the understanding and treatment of obesity.
Child Measurement Programme Report: Public Health Wales
The Child Measurement Programme (CMP) for Wales contains findings of the programme of child measurements carried out with children attending reception class in schools in Wales.
Food Standards Agency
The Food Standards Agency is an independent government department responsible for food safety and hygiene across the UK. They work with businesses to help them produce safe food, and with local authorities to enforce food safety regulations.
Monitor of Engagement with the Natural Environment: Natural England
Provides trend data for how people use the natural environment in England.
National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)
The NICE website includes some information and clinical guidelines on the prevention, identification, assessment and management of overweight and obesity in adults and children.
National Obesity Forum
The National Obesity Forum (NOF) was established by medical practitioners in May 2000 to raise awareness of the growing health impact that being overweight or obese was having on patients and the NHS.
PE and Sport Survey: Department for Education
The survey covers research into the proportion of pupils doing 2 hours of curriculum PE in partnership schools, and those exercising for at least 3 hours a week.
Public Health England
Public Health England make physical activity data from a variety of sources available on their Physical Activity profiles.
The Public Health England Obesity website (formerly the National Obesity Observatory) provides a single point of contact for wide-ranging authoritative information on data, evaluation, evidence and research related to weight status and its determinants. They work closely with a wide range of organisations and provide support to policy makers and practitioners involved in obesity and related issues.
Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition
The Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) is an advisory committee of independent experts that provides advice to the Food Standards Agency and Department of Health as well as other government agencies and departments. Its remit includes matters concerning nutrient content of individual foods, advice on diet and the nutritional status of people.
The Scottish Health Survey: Scottish Government
The Scottish Health Survey (SHeS) provides a detailed picture of the health of the Scottish population in private households and is designed to make a major contribution to the monitoring of health in Scotland.
Tackling Obesities: Future Choices 2nd Edition Modelling Future Trends in Obesity and Their Impact on Health Foresight: Government Office for Science
This project looked at a sustainable response to obesity can be implemented in the UK over the next 40 years. It gathered scientific evidence from across a wide range of disciplines to inform a strategic view of this issue.
Tackling Obesity in England: National Audit Office (NAO)
NAO research identified wide variation in the way general practices manage overweight and obese patients, and uncertainty about which treatment and referral options were the most effective.
The Taking Part Survey: Department for Culture, Media and Sport
The Taking Part survey provides reliable national estimates of adult and child engagement with sport, libraries, the arts, heritage and museums and galleries.
World Health Organisation
The WHO BMI database provides both national and sub-national adult underweight, overweight and obesity prevalence rates by country, year of survey and gender.
The Welsh Health Survey: Welsh Government
The Welsh Health Survey (WHS) provides information about the health and health-related lifestyles of people living in Wales.
World Obesity Federation
World Obesity Federation represents professional members of the scientific, medical and research communities from over 50 regional and national obesity associations. Through their membership they create a global community of organisations dedicated to solving the problems of obesity. They aim to lead and drive global efforts to reduce, prevent and treat obesity.