Babbage: How to tackle the obesity epidemic

A new class of drugs for weight loss have become available and are showing promising results. That’s welcome news, as a recent report estimates that half of the world’s population is expected to be overweight or obese by 2035. Obesity is a disease which can lead to serious health complications–and most previous attempts at treating it have proven futile. Can the new weight-loss drugs turn the tide against this global threat?

Louise Baur, president of the World Obesity Federation crunches the numbers on the global impact of overweight and obesity. Stephan Guyenet, a neurobiologist and author of “The Hungry Brain”, explains the neurological and genetic factors that influence weight gain. Chris van Tulleken, an infectious diseases doctor at University College London and author of the upcoming book “Ultra-Processed People”, explores how the modern diet is contributing to the obesity epidemic–and other health problems. Plus, host Alok Jha asks Natasha Loder, The Economist’s health editor, how important the new skinny jabs are in the fight against obesity.

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