On Thursday 4th March 2021 individuals around the world will be marking World Obesity Day. In this post we provide an update on this year’s theme, how OEN UK will be marking the day and how you can get involved.

The world obesity day theme 2021

This year, the World Obesity Federation are once again calling on people globally to come together to better understand and address the obesity health issue. 

The Day exists to encourage  people come together to recognise the range of root causes of obesity, understand these causes better, extend empathetic understanding to those living with obesity and empower action to better our collective future. These aims are close to OEN’s heart because they are aligned with our mission and we are excited to celebrate with you and so many others across the globe.

On World Obesity Day March 4th 2021, the World Obesity Federation is launching their Every Body Needs Everybody campaign because we all have a role to play in supporting and advocating for people living with obesity. We must recognise that every body matters if we are to build a healthier world for everybody. 

“Obesity affects 100s of millions of people around the world. People must be protected from unhealthy and unsafe environments. Health systems must be strengthened to ensure people with obesity have access to safe, quality care. Because every body needs everybody.”

World Obesity Federation

Everybody includes you! Whatever your story, whatever your role, you can be part of bringing change on this issue and ensure that every body matters.

How OEN UK will be celebrating World Obesity Day 2021

Weight stigma is widely accepted and practiced in the UK. OEN UK believes that every body matters. No one should experience discrimination because of their body size, and yet people with obesity experience this on a daily basis. The term weight stigma refers to the social devaluation and negative attitudes which are directed at people with obesity from all sides including the media, healthcare professionals and the general public.

This is unacceptable.

On World Obesity Day 2021, OEN UK is launching our ‘Stand Up to Weight Stigma’ campaign to change this. Because every body matters.

OEN UK’s STAND UP to stigma campaign

Over the next 12 months, OEN UK  will be calling on healthcare professionals, researchers, the media, policymakers and the general public to Stand Up to Weight Stigma because we need everybody to change this.

This World Obesity Day we invite you to ‘Stand Up to Weight Stigma’ with us. We invite you to join this campaign by doing the following:

  1. Get informed about weight stigma. Watch this Panel Discussion about the effects of weight stigma on people with obesity.
  2. Pledge to end weight stigma. A team of experts, including OEN’s Chair, Professor Rachel Batterham, have developed a Pledge to end the social stigma of obesity and invite organisations and individuals to sign the pledge to help eradicate weight-based stigma and discrimination. You can read and sign the pledge here.
  3. Understand what needs to change in obesity care. Read the Global Obesity Forum’s ROOTS framework for change.

Visit the OEN UK website on World Obesity Day to find out more about the campaign.

Other ways to stand up to weight stigma

Get involved on social media

If you use social media why not show your ⭕ for obesity and ‘Stand Up to Weight Stigma’ at the same time? Take a picture of you standing tall and holding your hands together in an ‘O’ shape. Post it on social media with a tag to @ObesityEmpower (twitter) or @OENUK (Facebook) to #StandUpToWeightStigma in support of #WorldObesityDay, because #EveryBodyNeedsEverybody.

You can find some example World Obesity Day social media posts here.


Take just 30 minutes to watch a panel discussion with Professor Andrew Goddard, Professor Rachel Batterham and Angela Chesworth hosted at University College London Hospital on World Obesity Day 2020 and engage further with the issue of weight stigma. Watch it here.

OEN UK is committed to improving the health and lives of people living with obesity.