New initiative brought in to help tackle obesity
More than 60% of residents over 18 classified as overweight in Bucks
NEW initiatives are being launched to tackle obesity after it was revealed more than 60 per cent of adults in Buckinghamshire are overweight. According to a report by Bucks County Council’s health and wellbeing board 60.2 per cent of Bucks residents over the age of 18 are overweight or obese compared with 61.3 per cent across the UK.
A total of 20.7 per cent of adults in Bucks are considered “physically inactive” – as they do less than 30 minutes of physical activity per week – compared with the national statistic of 22.3 per cent.
Board members said a new integrated lifestyle service (ILS) will be introduced this month to improve access, assessment and referral for a range of services including weight management.
The report stated: “Obesity is a very complex and multifactorial issue, and more work is required in all areas to address it. Members of the health and wellbeing board and their partner organisations can look to address the wide range of factors that impact on healthy weight, including identifying residents who would benefit from losing weight and offer brief intervention or advice to signpost or refer to support services.”
Figures also revealed just 45.4 per cent of people invited to have a free health check in Bucks accepted the offer - prompting Bucks County Council to urge more residents to take advantage of the screenings.
Speaking at a meeting of the health and wellbeing board on Thursday last week, Dr Jane O’Grady said the checks will pick up potentially life-threatening illnesses – however it is often difficult to encourage people to change their habits. She said: “It is very good at picking up who may be developing diabetes, or dementia, or stroke or heart attacks.
“The tricky bit is getting people to change their behaviour. So people are given the information and then it is the quality of the interaction with the person giving the health check and your individual motivation to change your behaviour.
“So of course if everyone changes their behaviour we absolutely know it will have a dramatic impact on people’s health and wellbeing.”
To view the report visit https://democracy.buckscc.gov.uk/mgConvert2PDF. aspx?ID=112206