Global Academy of Agriculture and Food Systems

Policymakers advised on actions toward healthy diets

Nutrition experts offer guidelines for action at local levels to support healthy diet and weight across populations.

Researchers are engaging with policymakers across Scotland to share their findings on supporting healthy diets and healthy weights in local populations.

Professor Lindsay Jaacks, lead author of a report for Obesity Action Scotland, is sharing her findings at a series of meetings with policymakers around the country, beginning with an event at NHS Fife.

The newly released report, Local Levers for Diet and Healthy Weight, outlines local measures that can positively support communities on diet and healthy weight.

It marks the conclusion of an initial phase in a wider initiative by Obesity Action Scotland, Scottish Government, Public Health Scotland and Food Standards Scotland.  This work involved supporting local areas to deliver a whole systems approach to diet and healthy weight.

Report recommendations

The report recommends action to restrict food marketing, utilise planning to improve food environments, and strengthen public food procurement and provision standards.

It further supports moves to work with the out-of-home sector to reduce calories on menus, promote and support physical activity, protect, promote, and support breastfeeding and healthy diets for children, and improve uptake of school meals.

Researchers highlight policy opportunities to shape food environments, including the implementation of the Good Food Nation (Scotland) Act 2022 and associated Good Food Nation plans and the National Planning Framework 4 (NPF4) and associated local development plans.

The report was compiled and published by Obesity Action Scotland, and Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow in conjunction with University of Edinburgh Global Academy of Agriculture and Food Systems.

Together we can all shape our food and physical activity environments to support healthy weight and protect and improve the health of the Scottish people.

Lorraine TullochProgramme Lead, Obesity Action Scotland

It is possible to halt the rise in obesity in Scotland and achieve a healthy weight for all. None of the local levers alone will have a huge impact, but with continued evaluation and improvement, together they can.

Professor Lindsay JaacksGlobal Academy of Agriculture and Food Systems

Related links

Read the Obesity Action Scotland report