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National Statistics
Publication, Part of

Statistics on Obesity, Physical Activity and Diet - England, 2017

Official statistics, National statistics
Publication Date:
Geographic Coverage:
Geographical Granularity:
Local Authorities, Regions, Clinical Commissioning Groups, Clinical Commissioning Area Teams, Clinical Commissioning Regions, Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships, Deprivation
Date Range:
01 Jan 2015 to 31 Mar 2016


This statistical report presents information on obesity, physical activity and diet, drawn together from a variety of sources.

The topics covered include:

  • Obesity related hospital admissions
  • Prescription items for the treatment of obesity
  • Adult obesity prevalence
  • Childhood obesity prevalence
  • Physical activity levels among adults and children
  • Diet among adults and children, including trends in purchases, and consumption of food and drink and energy intake

Each section provides an overview of the key findings from these sources, as well as providing sources of further information and links to relevant documents and sources. Some of the data have been published previously by NHS Digital.

Update 25/04/17: A new data visualisation tool at the link below allows users to select obesity related hospital admissions data for any Local Authority (as contained in Excel tables 3, 7 and 11 of this publication), along with time series data from 2013/14. Regional and national comparisons are also provided.

Obesity data visualisation tool

This tool is in Microsoft PowerBI which does not fully support all accessibility needs. If you need further assistance, please contact us for help.


  • In 2015, 58 per cent of women and 68 per cent of men were overweight or obese. 

  • Obesity prevalence increased from 15 per cent in 1993 to 27 per cent in 2015.

  • In 2015/16, over 1 in 5 children in Reception, and over 1 in 3 children in Year 6 were measured as obese or overweight.

  • In 2015/16 there were 525 thousand admissions in NHS hospitals where obesity was a factor.

  • In 2015/16, there were 6,438 Finished Consultant Episodes (FCE's) in NHS hospitals with a primary diagnosis of obesity and a main or secondary procedure of bariatric surgerya.

  • Over three quarters of bariatric surgery patients were aged between 35 and 54, and over three quarters of patients were female.

  • 26 per cent of adults ate the recommended 5 or more portions of fruit and vegetables a day in 2015. Women (27 per cent) were more likely to do so than men (24 per cent).

  • In 2014, 52 per cent of 15 year olds reported they consumed 5 or more portions of fruit and vegetables a day.

  • In 2015/16, 26 per cent of adults were classified as inactive (fewer than 30 minutes physical activity a week).

a The data on hospital activity presented in this report are for inpatients only and therefore does not reflect all hospital activity. Outpatient procedures are not included in these figures due to the primary diagnosis code being poorly populated, and there being no certainty that procedures are for obesity diagnoses. This should be considered when interpreting changes over time as recording and clinical practice may change and in particular, practices vary between hospitals as to whether some episodes are carried out or recorded in outpatient or inpatient settings.


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Last edited: 24 May 2021 4:02 pm