Obesity is one of the greatest public health challenges of the 21st century. Its prevalence has tripled in many countries of the WHO European Region since the 1980s, and the numbers of those affected continue to rise at an alarming rate. In addition to causing various physical disabilities and psychological problems, excess weight drastically increases a person’s risk of developing a number of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs), including cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes.

WHO/Europe approaches to obesity

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WHO European Region has lowest global breastfeeding rate

Breastfeeding is the best option for infant feeding and also has long-term health benefits for mothers. However, breastfeeding rates in many countries in the WHO European Region are low, and some mothers with low socioeconomic status are less likely to begin breastfeeding. 1-7 August is World Breastfeeding Week.

Coming up

World Health Day 2016: Diabetes

7 April 2016


Video – WHO-FAO: Second International Conference on Nutrition

Data and statistics


The percentage of children who are overweight before puberty that will be overweight in early adulthood.

More data and statistics