Global Strategy on Diet, Physical Activity and Health

Diet and physical activity: a public health priority

Diet and physical activity: a public health priority
Vanessa Collazos

Unhealthy diets and physical inactivity are key risk factors for the major noncommunicable diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, and diabetes.

Heads of State and Government committed in the Political Declaration of the High-level Meeting of the United Nations General Assembly on the Prevention and Control of NCDs to reduce the exposure of populations to unhealthy diets and physical inactivity.

Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity

Photo of 2 young girls in front of computer, EURO.

May 2014 -- To gather the best possible advice on dealing with the crisis of childhood obesity, WHO’s Director-General has established a high-level Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity. Tackling childhood obesity now represents an important opportunity to reduce the impact of heart disease, diabetes and other serious diseases in future – while immediately improving the health of children.


  • 22 September 2016

    SHAKE the salt habit

    The SHAKE Technical Package for Salt reduction has been designed to assist Member States with the development, implementation and monitoring of salt reduction strategies to enable them to achieve a reduction in population salt intake. The SHAKE package outlines the policies and interventions which have been effective in reducing population salt intake, provides evidence of the efficacy of the recommended interventions, and includes a toolkit containing resources to assist Members States to implement the interventions.

  • 6 April 2016

    World Health Day 2016: WHO calls for global action to halt rise in and improve care for people with diabetes

    The number of people living with diabetes has nearly quadrupled since 1980 to 422 million adults, with most living in developing countries. WHO is marking World Health Day, 7 April, by calling for action on diabetes. In its first “Global report on diabetes”, WHO highlights the need to step up prevention and treatment of the disease.

  • December 2015

    • Taxes on sugar-sweetened beverages as a public health strategy: the experience of Mexico
      The purpose of the present work is to describe the procedure whereby a tax on sugar- sweetened beverages and energy-dense foods was implemented as a public health strategy in Mexico. This document is an attempt to make the experience of the PAHO/WHO Country Office of Mexico public so that useful elements can be replicated in other contexts and further interventions be developed to improve health.

Topics of interest

  • Diet
    Healthy diets play a key role in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes.
  • Physical Activity
    Being physically active is essential for good health throughout life.

Facts on diet and physical activity