Pre-Conference Event Examines Lessons Learned and Opportunities Ahead
OTTAWA, Nov. 1, 2011 /CNW/ - While tobacco use remains the leading cause
of preventable disease and death in Canada, the rise in obesity rates
among both children and adults is a close second and threatens to
overtake the number one position without appropriate interventions.
"Two thirds of Canadian adults are either overweight or obese, along
with 25 per cent of children," said Dr. David Hammond, associate
professor at the University of Waterloo School of Public Health and
Health Systems. "Obesity rates are increasing across all socioeconomic
status groups, age groups and geographic regions."
Dramatic population level changes can happen over a short period of
time, but individual level factors cannot explain either the rise or
fall of tobacco use, or the increase in obesity.
"Reductions in smoking are largely the result of specific policy
interventions, with price increases through tobacco taxation being most
effective," continued Hammond. "Along with changes in where you can
smoke, how tobacco companies can market products, and how smoking risk
is communicated to the consumer, these interventions have helped reduce
smoking prevalence in Canada from 50 per cent in 1960's to 17 per cent
Hammond believes that similar policy interventions could lead to a major
change in obesity rates among Canadians, and he is not alone in this
opinion. Tobacco control professionals from across Canada are
gathering to share information and lessons learned with delegates
working on obesity prevention.
Through the exchange of knowledge, particularly what worked and did not
work for tobacco control, the goal of reducing obesity rates in Canada
through policy intervention can get a head start.
SOURCE 7th National Conference on Tobacco or Health (NCTH)
For further information:
To arrange interviews with conference spokespeople, please contact: