World Obesity Day

Every year, 4 March marks World Obesity Day. On this occasion, the Ministry of Health and Social Security wishes to highlight the initiatives and concrete actions taken by the various players in Luxembourg who are actively involved in the fight against obesity, while reminding people who need assistance that they are not alone.

All the information can now also be found on the website in a section dedicated to obesity.

Obesity is a complex, multifactorial chronic disease, which can result from a variety of factors such as genetic predisposition, underlying physical and mental conditions, the use of certain medications, as well as environmental and social influences. However, it is mainly caused by an energy imbalance resulting from poor eating habits, lack of physical activity and a sedentary lifestyle.

In most cases, obesity is a precursor to other chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer, which are the leading causes of death in Luxembourg. The result is always a combination of different factors that are added over the years.

Multi-level actions

  • Promotion
    The interministerial "Gesond iessen, Méi beweegen" (GIMB) programme aims to promote a balanced diet and regular physical activity, while combating obesity and sedentary lifestyles throughout the population.
  • Screening and treatment
    In the case of overweight, weight reduction is easier than in the case of obesity. Regular weight monitoring by primary care is essential. Following this screening, the general practitioner, occupational physician, school doctor or any other health professional can refer patients for appropriate treatment.
  • Care and support
    Because of its multifactorial nature, obesity requires a multidisciplinary approach, including medical care, dietetics, physical activity and psychosocial support.

Overweight and obesity in Luxembourg

According to the European Health Interview Survey (EHIS) conducted in Luxembourg in 2019, the proportion of obese adults has increased from 15.6% in 2014 to 16.5% in 2019.

In 2019, the obesity rate among men (18.4%) was higher than among women (14.6%). Overweight affects 40% of men and 24% of women in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg.

The study, entitled "Health Behaviour in School-Aged Children" and dating from 2022, reveals that overweight and obesity among young people aged 11 to 18 in Luxembourg represent 21%, a slight increase compared with the 2018 study, when the rate was 19%.

According to the first report on children's health in Luxembourg published by the National Health Observatory in January, entitled "Eng gesond Zukunft", the rate of overweight among children aged 11 to 12 from less-favoured socio-economic backgrounds is 24%, compared with 18% among their peers from more affluent backgrounds.

Press release by the Ministry of Health and Social Security

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