World Obesity Day is a global event, held annually on March 4, declared to raise awareness and increase knowledge about obesity and its effects on our health. Obesity is a global health problem and it is affecting more than 800 million of us worldwide, and millions more are at risk. It is defined as an abnormal or excessive fat accumulation. Our diet, lifestyle, and genetic background all play a role in the increase of obesity.
Now, most of us are working from home or having more flexibility to get work done from the comfort of our own, so it is not surprising for employers to find their employees getting on a little weight when they go back to work. Teleworking or some work types may involve specific occupational risks and we are more exposed to physical risks linked to prolonged sedentary life. Not only affects your quality of life and appearance, but obesity can also lead to a number of serious and potentially life-threatening conditions such as heart attack, stroke, and diabetes.
I believe that every employer has a responsibility to create multidisciplinary approach programs that focus on providing workers with the knowledge, skills, and support to eat a healthier diet and be more active while working remotely or at the office. These may be onsite exercise facilities, nutrition courses, access to nutritionists and other counselors, and company policies that provide healthier food options and reimburse exercise-related expenses.
By Dr. Hamit Demir (IEH Health Officer, Paris)