Aiming to reduce the rising number of people with obesity in the country, Dubai authorities are planning to mandate food establishments to include the calorie content of the dishes in their menu.

Putting information in front of consumers will help them to make healthier choices, Dr Waffa Ayesh, director of clinical nutrition at Dubai Health Authority, told The National.

“The move will help promote the concept of mindful eating and will deter people from frequently opting for high calorie meals,” she said.

According to the Global Burden of Disease Study 2013, more than 66 per cent of men and 60 per cent of women in the UAE are overweight or obese.

The DHA and Dubai Municipality are working to implement the new rule, which will be rolled out in phases to help restaurants cope and make the necessary changes.

“We will do everything in our power to improve the way community members in Dubai eat, yet finally it does boil down to individual choices. Many cities abroad have successfully incorporated this rule,” said Dr Ayesh.