PIGGIN, J. and LEE, J., 2011. 'Don't mention obesity': contradictions and tensions in the UK Change4Life health promotion campaign. Journal of Health Psychology, 16 (8), pp. 1151 - 1164.
The emphasis on body weight and the terms ‘fat’, ‘overweight’ and ‘obese’ are increasingly political in public health promotion. The UK government’s 2009—2011 social marketing campaign, Change4Life explicitly avoids the term ‘obesity’ and imagery that connotes it, despite the emphasis on obesity in the preceding research, policy and strategy. Using a critical health psychology perspective, this research explores the tensions arising from the omission of ‘obesity’ in the Change4Life campaign. We argue the justifications for omitting obesity are at times contrary to evidence that informed the campaign. Considerations are offered for the construction of future health promotion campaigns.