European Congress on Obesity: Takeaways from ECO 2019

Last Updated : 09 May 2019

The 26th European Congress on Obesity took place in Glasgow, Scotland, between the 28 April and the 1 May 2019. In collaboration with EASO, member of the EU Platform for Action on Diet, Physical Activity and Health, EUFIC was actively engaged in the event by interviewing the international leading obesity experts on their latest research, clinical approaches and perspectives on obesity, a chronic disease with rising prevalence. This year’s ECO saw a greater involvement on the part of patients, who presented the new EASO ECPO - the European Coalition for People Living with obesity, representing 22 European national obesity organisations which focus on patients. Some of their members also intervened as speakers in the congress and launched the campaign ‘#PeopleFirst’ that aims to eradicate social stigma around obesity by changing the language we use to refer to it. From emotional eating to childhood obesity, we collected some user-friendly takeaways of ECO 2019 in a playlist. Enjoy!

  1. Opening ECO 2019, Prof. Mike Lean from University of Glasgow gives you a feel of some of the topical issues that will be addressed.
  2. “No nutrient is your enemy or your friend”. Assoc. Prof. Faidon Magkos from University of Copenhagen on high-protein diets and their effects on body weight.
  3. Dr Esther Papies from University of Glasgow shares her findings on why people with a lower socio-economic status run a higher risk of eating unhealthy food.
  4. “A calorie is not just a calorie”. Prof. Alexandra Johnstone from University of Aberdeen studies how to manage appetite and body weight.
  5. Prof. Elisa Boelens from Ghent University provided adolescents with strategies to regulate their emotions when it comes to food choices.
  6. What are the socio-economic outcomes of obesity? Listen to Alexa Blair Segal from Imperial College London as she presents the latest findings.
  7. Difficulties in regulating emotions can influence eating behaviour and weight. Dr Cristiana Duarte from University of Leeds has some inspiring thoughts to share.
  8. Susie Birney from European Coalition for People living with Obesity launched the People First campaign and strikes us with a simple but powerful shift in terminology.
  9. A WHO Europe Childhood Obesity Surveillance Initiative study shows a correlation between breastfeeding and obesity in children, says Dr João Breda from WHO Europe.
  10. Assoc. Prof. David Thivel from Université Clermont Auvergne talks about how exercise can be used to modify energy intake and avoid compensatory responses.
  11. Obesity in children can have vascular consequences. Eline Vermeiren from University of Antwerp has carried out a weight-loss programme to see if this damage can be reversed.
  12. When facing a stressful situation, do you resort to comfort food? If yes, you are not alone. Dr Nathalie Michels from Ghent University is looking at how to prevent it.
  13. The largest study on the prevalence of severe obesity in children was carried out by WHO Europe, and its findings are quite worrying, tells us Dr João Breda.
  14. The first step to cope with stress-induced snacking is to be aware of it. Listen to Dr Nathalie Michels from Ghent University for some other useful tips.
  15. What is the association between diet and breast cancer risk? Andrea Romanos from University of Navarra studies the preventive role of fruit & vegs.