Reducing risk of childhood obesity in the wake of COVID 19

Reducing risk of childhood obesity in the wake of COVID 19

Colleagues issue a call to actions for governments to prioritise child obesity as they implement measures to recover from the pandemic

Public health responses to the ongoing challenges presented by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic have shifted focus away from the prevention and management of childhood obesity and has exacerbated several risk factors for childhood obesity. Extended lockdowns and physical distancing measures have increased children’s exposure to obesogenic environments and has disrupted opportunities for young people to participate in health promoting behaviours.

In this excellent video summary, the authors of the article in the British Medical Journal explain the challenge.

Many thanks to Louise Tully, a member of the EASO Early Career Network, for helping us to coordinate the video development, to the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation and to Salzburg Global.

Congratulations to the authors, listed here as they appear in the video

1. Rachel Thompson, World Obesity Federation, London, UK
2. Professor Steven L. Gortmaker; Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard T H Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA
3. Sarah Czernin; Austrian Academic Institute for Clinical Nutrition, Vienna, Austria
4. Dr Alexandra Chung; Health and Social Care Unit, School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University, Melbourne, Australia
5. Louise Tully; Obesity Research and Care Group, School of Physiotherapy, RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences, Dublin, Ireland
6. Athar Mansoor; Division of Public Policy, Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, Hong Kong


Louise Tully is a PhD candidate at the RCSI University of Medicine and Health Sciences, and is registered on the SPHeRE programme for population health and health services research. Louise is in the final stage of her doctoral studies on telehealth for paediatric weight management under the supervision of EASO secretary Dr Grace O’Malley. Louise is a registered public health nutritionist (RNutr), with a background in research on infant and young child nutrition. She now works part time on a project aimed at building capacity for child and adolescent weight management services in the Republic of Ireland. Louise represented EASO at the 2019 Salzburg Global Seminar programme on “Halting the Childhood Obesity Epidemic: Identifying Decisive Interventions in Complex Systems”, jointly hosted by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, where this collaboration began.