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THAO in Spain

THAO Salud Infantil Programme has been developed and adapted in Spain with the EPODE methodology.

Thao-Salud Infantil Programme is implemented at town level to involve the entire community. It started in September 2007 in 5 pilot cities (Aranjuez, Castelldefels, San Juan de Aznalfarache, Sant Carles de la Ràpita and Villanueva de la Cañada, of the Autonomous Communities of Andalucía, Madrid and Cataluña) with the objective to contribute to change the behaviour of population regarding physical activity and diet in order to promote a healthier lifestyle and to prevent childhood obesity. The targets of the Thao Programme are children between 0 and 12 years old and their families. The programme shows that the number of children affected by obesity in Spain increases with the age of a child. Besides, Thao underlines the influence of social-economic factors and cultural level of a city on the level of childhood obesity.

Once a year, an anthropometric study is realised: measurement of every child (BMI and waist circumference) to calculate the prevalence of obesity and overweight, and to evaluate the efficiency of the programme. Another annual study is about diet and physical activity habits of the children. Thao integrated as well a monitoring in order to improve the actions and tools developed for the Programme.

The last study, whereby more than 17.000 children from 3 to 12 years old were measured, concluded that 28 % of children have weight excess, and among them 8 % of children are obese.

In 2011, the Thao Programme has been extended to around 80 cities in 10 different communities covering more than 300.000 children (see figure 1 below).



Figure 1: THAO cities in May 2010

Thao-Salud Infantil Congresses in 2010:
- "V Encuentro Thao": 20th and 21st May 2010 in Santiago de Compostela (Galicia)
- "VI Encuentro Thao": 21-22nd October 2010 in Ibiza (Balears)
For more information, consult THAO Resources centre and THAO website.

For more information, consult THAO Resources centre and THAO website. 


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EPODE in Europe


The EPODE initiative currently extends to 275 European Cities and towns - 225 in France (EPODE), 32 in Spain (THAO), 13 in Belgium (VIASANO), 5 in Greece (PAIDEIATROFI) and involves over 2.5 million inhabitants.