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Obesity is a major global health crisis, one in four adults are living with obesity and childhood obesity has been classed by the World Health Organisation as one of the most serious challenges for the 21st Century with significant health, social and economic consequences.

The Foresight Tackling Obesities systems map illustrates the complex web of obesity causation, in which behaviour is affected by numerous heterogeneous and interdependent individual and socio-environmental level factors that interact dynamically. Therefore, to help to address this epidemic, we need to look across all the different factors and explore what can be done over the short, medium and long term. Whilst most Local Authorities will have some strategies and programmes in place to tackle obesity, taking a whole systems approach can add value by providing the opportunity to engage stakeholders across the wider system to develop a shared vision and coherent actions that tackle the more upstream drivers of obesity, which are often outside the realms of Public Health.  
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