30 years after the first government targets were set to tackle obesity, journalist and broadcaster Michael Mosley delves into why our politicians seem powerless to reverse – or even halt – the alarming rise in Britons living with obesity.
Over two episodes Michael Mosley: Who Made Britain Fat? will get answers from political insiders at the highest level, including former Chancellor George Osborne and Cameron’s Chief of Policy Baroness Cavendish, discovering the truth about industry lobbying and political pressure.
Michael reveals that no-one can put a figure on the amount spent by governments on decades of anti-obesity schemes. And he meets everyday people, as well as passionate campaigners like Jamie Oliver, who tell their own stories about what’s at stake if the government doesn’t get serious about tackling obesity.
In episode one Michael offers the very first scrutiny of the current government’s wide-ranging new anti-obesity proposals. He reveals new findings on the effectiveness of some schemes, hears the reality from the frontline of one trumpeted new proposal, and discovers how industry is already sidestepping incoming restrictions.
In episode two Michael turns his attention to the towns and high streets of Britain where those policies are supposed to be making a difference. He asks if our beloved health service is getting it right on obesity – revealing troubling new research from frontline GPs. And questions whether our supermarkets are doing enough to use their immense power to make it easier for us to make the right choices.
Michael Mosley said: “Ever since I discovered that I had type 2 diabetes, back in 2012, and managed to get my blood sugars back to a healthy range by losing weight, I’ve been writing about the dangers of our ever-expanding waistlines. The pandemic has, in turn, contributed to soaring rates of childhood obesity, type 2 diabetes and blood pressure, all linked to our growing love of takeaways and ultra-processed foods...
“The current government appears keen to do something about it - but will its solutions work? And to what extent have 30 years of policy failure contributed to our stunningly high rates of obesity? It's desperately important we get this right, so I'm thrilled to be investigating this area for Channel 4. It's been an eye-opening journey!"
Louisa Compton, Head of News and Current Affairs and Specialist Factual and Sport said: “How can it be that after 30 years of different government initiatives obesity is still rising at an alarming rate in Britain? We’re really excited that Michael Mosley, having already made two successful series on weight loss for the channel, is taking his considerable expertise to investigate what the UK is getting wrong when it comes to tackling obesity”
Michael Mosley: Who Made Britain Fat? airs this spring on Channel 4.