Living and working near takeaways linked to obesity

13 March 2014        

Category: BHF Comment

Man eating salad in an office

People who live and work near a high number of takeaways are more likely to be obese than people less exposed to these outlets, according to new research we helped to fund.

The researchers found that those who live or work near to takeaway outlets were almost twice as likely to be obese than those who encountered the fewest outlets.

The study was carried out by the MRC Epidemiology Unit at the University of Cambridge and combined information from over 5,000 adults.

Tracy Parker, our Heart Health Dietitian, said:

It's vital we have the tools to make healthy choices when eating takeaways.

"We already know that people are spending more than ever on takeaways and food eaten away from home, and that these foods are often less healthy than the meals we make ourselves. This is a worrying trend given that a quarter of adults in the UK are already obese, putting them at greater risk of heart disease.

"While this study can't prove someone’s local environment can cause them to become obese, it's vital we have the tools to make healthy choices when eating takeaways or food in a restaurant. Clearly signposting healthy meal options, providing clear nutritional information, and offering appropriate portion sizes can help this.”

You can find out more about healthy eating and your heart health by signing up to Heart Matters.