Preventing Overweight and Obesity in Scotland: A Route Map Towards Healthy Weight

Scotland's obesity strategy.


There is a national indicator relating to children to ' reduce the rate of increase in the proportion of children with their Body Mass Index outwith a healthy range by 2018'. Other targets relate to desirable behavioural changes in terms of physical activity and diet which are likely to contribute to reducing the prevalence of obesity in Scotland.

There are no other targets for obesity or weight management yet.

National Physical Activity Strategy - by 2022 50% of adults and 80% of children will be expected to meet the current recommended levels of physical activity and that adults should accumulate at least 30 minutes of moderate intensive activity on most days of the week and that children should accumulate at least one hour of moderate intensity activity on each day of the week.

Scottish Dietary Goals - re-affirmed in the National Food and Drink Policy 54

Fruit & vegetables

Average intake to double to more than 400 grams per day.


Intake to increase by 45% from present daily intake of 106 grams, mainly using wholemeal and brown breads.

Breakfast cereals

Average intake to double from the present intake of 17 grams per day.


Average intake of total fat to reduce from 40.7% to no more than 35% of food energy.
Average intake of saturated fatty acids to reduce from 16.6% to no more than 11% of food energy.


Average intake to reduce from 163 mmol per day to 100 mmol per day.


Average intake of non-milk extrinsic ( NME) sugars in adults not to increase.
Average intake of NME sugars in children to reduce by half i.e. to less than 10% of total energy.

Total complex carbohydrates

Increase average non-sugar carbohydrates intake by 25% from 124 grams per day, through increased consumption of fruit and vegetables, bread, breakfast cereals, rice and pasta and through an increase of 25% in potato consumption.


White fish consumption to be maintained at current levels.
Oily fish consumption to double from 44 grams per week to 88 grams per week.

These goals were not designed for obesity prevention, but will support specific goals for obesity.

In addition, NHSScotland performance targets for 2009/10 include two targets of direct relevance to obesity:

  • Increase the proportion of new-born children exclusively breastfed at 6-8 weeks from 26.2% in 2006/7 to 32.7% in 2010/11
  • Achieve agreed completion rates for child healthy weight intervention programme by 2010/11

Related national indicators and targets

Health National Indicators and Targets: 55

  • Increase healthy life expectancy at birth in the most deprived areas
  • Reduce mortality from coronary heart disease among the under 75s in deprived areas

Non-health National Indicators and Targets

  • Increase the percentage of adults who rate their neighbourhood as a good place to live
  • Increase the proportion of journeys to work made by public or active transport
  • Increase the proportion of adults making one or more visits to the outdoors per week
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