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This profile looks at the proportion of obese adults and children in North Yorkshire, the proportion engaging in physical activity and breastfeeding initiation.

Overweight and Obese children in reception and Year 6

Childhood obesity is closely related to excess weight in adulthood. The proportion of children in Reception (age 4-5 years) with excess weight in North Yorkshire is similar to England (22% and 23%, respectively). Scarborough (28%) is the only district with a rate that is statistically higher than England. The prevalence of children with excess weight in Year 6 (age 10 -11 years) is significantly lower in North Yorkshire at 32% compared to 34% in England, and none of the districts have rates that are significantly higher than England.

Physical Activity

Physical activity is associated with better health overall. Adults are identified as being inactive if they engage in less than 30 minutes of physical activity per week. The proportion of inactive adults in North Yorkshire (19%) is significantly lower than England (22%). Craven (16%), Harrogate (15%) and Richmondshire (17%) all have proportions of inactive adults significantly lower than England.


Breastfeeding provides benefits to the health and wellbeing of both mother and child. In North Yorkshire, approximately 74% of mothers in 2016/17 initiated breastfeeding within 48 hours of delivery, similar to England (75%). In Harrogate, 83% of mothers initiate breastfeeding within 48 hours of delivery, the highest in North Yorkshire. In contrast, Scarborough (61%) has the lowest initiation rate in the county. Both districts could provide learning opportunities regarding the benefits and barriers to breastfeeding initiation.