Investment case for the prevention and reduction of childhood and adolescent overweight and obesity in Mexico


Despite efforts to curb the rise in Mexico's child and adolescent overweight and obesity rates, prevalence in Mexico has grown by 120% since 1990 to 43.3% in 2022. This investment case identifies policies that will produce the largest returns for Mexico. The investment case model builds beyond a cost-of-illness analysis by predicting the health and societal economic impact of implementing child and adolescent overweight and obesity interventions in a cohort aged 0-19 from 2025 to 2090. The Markov model's impacts include healthcare expenditures, years of life lost, and reduced wages and productivity. We projected and compared costs in a status quo scenario to an intervention scenario to estimate cost savings and calculate return-on-investment (ROI). Total lifetime health and economic costs amount to USD 1.8 trillion-USD 30 billion on average per year. Implementing five interventions can reduce lifetime costs by approximately 7%. Each intervention has a low cost per disability-adjusted life year averted over 30-year, 50-year, and lifetime horizons. The findings demonstrate that a package of interventions mitigating child and adolescent overweight and obesity offers a strong ROI. The novel investment case methods should be applied to other countries, particularly low- and middle-income countries.