This isn't about body-shaming. Obesity is behind a lot of health problems that are very expensive to treat, and Cancer Research says it's quickly becoming the biggest cause of cancer too. What's this all got to do with economics? Aside from the fact a healthy society is a productive one – a concept called
– obesity puts a huge strain on our health service. According to Public Health England the NHS spent an estimated £6.1bn on overweight or obesity-related ill-health in 2015. As our generation suffers increasing levels of obesity, that number will get higher. Obesity is also heavily linked to
: Public Health England said the most deprived 10 per cent of children are twice as likely to be obese as the least deprived 10 per cent.
To try and combat the problem, Cancer Research is launching a huge ad campaign to change peoples' behaviour, encouraging them to think more carefully about their weight and the impact it can have on health. They'll be working on assumptions about how we make choices drawn from
and psychology, to see whether those principles could be used to incentivise people to eat healthier.
It’s easy to think you’ve got nothing to do with the economy – you can’t see it, feel it, or engage with it in any tangible way. But in fact the economy is just the result of how you live your life and how everyone around you lives theirs…