Oscar A. Cabrera and Juan Carballo
Sarah A. Roache and Oscar A. Cabrera
This chapter explores the interrelationship between obesity prevention and human rights, focusing on the rights to health and food, and on children’s rights. Comparative analysis of international human rights law and global strategies to promote healthier diets demonstrate that these approaches are mutually supportive. The chapter also explores tensions between rights-based obesity prevention interventions and competing rights and interests among food companies and adult consumers. Consumers’ rights to information and health may interfere with industry claims to their own ‘human’ rights to free commerce or expression. An individual’s right to free choice and personal autonomy may conflict with another’s right to health. Through an illustrative selection of human rights case law, Roache and Cabrera analyze how courts balance competing interests in an era characterized by obesogenic food environments. While often complex and costly, rights-based litigation shows potential to promote human rights and reduce obesity by driving systematic changes in our food environments.