A report claims that Wellingborough is the most obese town in England.
The report, compiled by the Public Health Action Support Team for Northamptonshire County Council, says that 26.6 per cent of adults in the county are obese, and that this rises to 26.9 per cent in Wellingborough.
In England, 24.2 per cent of adults are classed as obese.
It also says that almost one in 10 children in Northamptonshire is obese when they start school, and nearly a quarter are obese or overweight.
By Year 6, more than one in six Northamptonshire children is obese and a third are overweight or obese.
Obesity increases the risk of many serious diseases including coronary heart disease, stroke, Type 2 diabetes and cancer.
The report goes on to say that the costs of caring for people with obesity are growing, with the county council spending £351,000 a year on weight management.
The total cost of prevention and treatment of obesity in the county is not known.
It also claims that “effective interventions to tackle obesity in children and adults are yet to be developed and implemented to scale and efficiently”.
The county council’s Healthy Weight, Healthy Lives document sets out its strategy for reducing obesity and helping those who are already have weight problems as well as encouraging everyone to eat healthily.
However, the strategy, which covered 2010-2014, has not yet been implemented fully.
According to the report, although the county council has set up several weight management services “they appear not to be fully co-ordinated and sometimes are not well targeted”, and that there is “no information on participants’ weight loss or gain”.
Dr Akeem Ali, the director of public health for Northamptonshire, said: “The study showed that like elsewhere we have a problem with obesity. Wellingborough has a higher rate than the average for England and places in the south of the county have a lower rate.
“A big concern is the number of children who are overweight. We offer various services, but we have to make sure they are services people want to engage with. Individual action is not enough. We want to have a dialogue with the whole community about how we can support individuals and make this the healthiest county in England.”