Prevention of Obesity in Children in the UAE

1.     Introduction

1.1.          Study Background

Nutritional health considered a global topic that holds extensive debate in the literature. Around the globe, UAE’s youth has twice the frequency of obese as compared to other countries. according to WHO (world health organization), in UAE, school children ages from 10 to 18 are 1.8 times obese than other developed nations (AlBlooshi et al., 2016). The statistics of WHO also showed that UAE ranked as the second-largest country with the highest obesity rates among children (Razzak et al., 2017). This study focuses on prevention techniques which can help the UAE government to mitigate the ratio of obesity among children.

1.2.          Problem statement

The survey of Global School-based Student Health (2017) showed that obesity put a negative impact on physical growth and study behaviors of students (Sulaiman et al., 2017). For this purpose, the UAE government is working on a public health campaign in order to mitigate number of obesity patients among children. In this regard, the UAE government has commenced the Vision 2021 of UAE that also aims to reduce the prevalence of obesity (AlBlooshi et al., 2016). s

1.3.          Study Objectives

  • Highlight the proportion of obesity among children in country.
  • To conduct research on the condition of obesity in UAE children.
  • To find out ways to prevent obesity among in UAE kids.


1.4.          Obesity in children and its prevention in country

The increasing ratio of overweightness among children in the country is deemed as a serious problem for the government. Vision 2021 of UAE has aimed to achieve state of the art and successfully health care system in the country. In literature, there are many studies conducted to understand the reasons of obesity and how to ensure the reduction of obesity among young children. The study of Razzak (2017) showed that the occurrence of obesity  in the UAE is recorded as 14.7% (Razzak et al., 2017). The government of the UAE is commencing new programs to tackle the issue of obesity among children and encouraging people to learn the knowledge and importance of healthy eating patterns and nutritional decision making. In literature, there are many reasons highlighted which cause obesity among children in UAE such as poor physical activity in schools, overeating, poor knowledge about healthy eating, medication, inheritance, and irregular sleeping patterns (Razzak et al., 2017). It is necessary for individuals to address all these causes of obesity to avoid the prevalence of this disease among children in the country.

2.     Methodology

2.1.          Methods

The methodology includes the primary and secondary forms of the studies. The primary model of the studies are including the changes of the system and the model’s assessment in line with data taken from the first-hand source of information such as the questionnaires, focus group analysis and the letters (Khan et al., 2018). The other form of the methodology includes a secondary form of study. The data from the second method can be calculated as a form of the literature review and online existing data. This study will be based upon the data collection through structured questionnaires from parents who will ensure that which are the preventive measures for children’s obesity in UAE. The samples will include parents of obese children in the UAE.

2.2.          Strategies

The strategies of this research as per the current model of the emphasis are encompassing the community involvement, social networking site’s involvement and the community health program designed at the public level (Khadri et al., 2018). These will be evaluated in this study. Approaches can be qualitative and quantitative. This study will be aimed at the inclusion of only quantitative study so that there will be a higher possibility of generalizability for this study. The structure of the information will also be stronger.

2.3.          Design

The design part of the study includes that the research will be based on simple random sampling (Deeb et al., 2018). The research will also be effectively supporting the techniques and their emphasis on the changes management. The structure of the research shows that there will be a higher rate of the philosophy involvement showing the logic and empirical assessment (Taha et al., 2018). The empirical information will be including the positivist philosophy. The violation of the services will also be communicated through the lack of community involvement in the information and strategies. Working ethics will be enumerated as communication of the information to respondents so that they will not respond fake to the needed information.

3.     Results

The expected outcomes for this research are devised into three stages.

3.1.          Role of the UAE Government

The expected role of the government in childhood obesity control is higher. The rate of the effects of the government will be higher due to their investment in various programs (Alswat et al., 2018). The challenges will also be communicated by the parents for their role in effective communication in the obesity control but the long-run planning will be highly effective. The major role is expected from the 2021 vision for a world-class system of healthcare. In this agenda, one of the key indicators that have been adopted from the HWO for obesity management in UAE children. The rate of obesity is higher as the range of the UAE measures are also varying as per the needs of the supporters. The following table shows the expected outcomes of the government as a role player in the prevention of UAE’s childhood obesity.

Factor Effect
1. National Agenda High effect and positive as well as significant
2. Community involvement It has a high effect and positive as well as significant
3. Community awareness It has a high effect and positive as well as significant
4. Children healthcare organizations It has a high effect and positive as well as significant
5. Human welfare bodies High effect and positive as well as significant


3.2.          Programs against this disease

Programs against those diseases show that there are percentages of the students who can be underweight in this process as well as overweight. The disease can be controlled first of all through implications of the challenges managing measures of awareness (Haq et al., 2018). The higher rate of awareness will communicate the target achievement for less obesity and more focus on the trends and initiatives. The schools and the organizations managing the children’s rights must be involved in such activities.  The following factors provide the effect of various programs who are useful for the role of playing in obesity control for children in the UAE.


Factor Effect
1. Public awareness High effect and positive as well as significant
2. Parent involvement It has a high effect and positive as well as significant
3. Schools events for awareness It has a high effect and positive as well as significant
4. Awareness of Cardiovascular diseases It has a high effect and positive as well as significant
5. Controlling actions High effect and positive as well as significant


These effects can also be supportive through the reporting and annual check and balance. The companies and organizational bodies can support the services of awareness at a low cost.

4.     Conclusion and recommendations

Summing it up, this study highlights the reasons for obesity among children in the UAE and how to overcome the occurrence of obesity. The study provides in-depth research about the ratio of obesity among children in the UAE and how the government of country is dealing with this issue. The study would include both primary and secondary research methods to collect data that ensure the reliability of study. There are some of important precautions for both government and individuals which can hinder the prevalence of obesity among children in UAE.

  • The government of UAE should ensure the use of social media tools such as Facebook and Twitter to aware people about the rapid occurrence of obesity. In Japan’s earthquake case, government implements social media tools for direct communication with public.
  • There should be strong engagement among UAE communities. The Youth of UAE should take steps of making videos and plans of healthy eating, good sleeping patters, and healthy life. They should be educating each other about healthy life benefits to combat with this major issue.
  • The education institutes should implement health campaigns in the country to promote healthy eating among youth.
  • Schools should implement School Health Index for self-assessment of children. This practice will help children to keep an eye on their eating habits and routine.

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