Rossendale Free Press - - Rossendale People - KEN MASSER @ken­masser

I’M a big be­liever that in or­der to get to where you want to go, you need to first know where you are. I would love for Rossendale to be a health­ier, hap­pier place but to get there it’s im­por­tant that we un­der­stand our cur­rent po­si­tion and chal­lenges.

As I’ve learned more about the health out­comes for Rossendale peo­ple I’ve been sad­dened, dis­ap­pointed, and in part shocked.

Ac­cord­ing to the lat­est Public Health data for Rossendale, our life ex­pectancy for both men (77.7 years) and women (82.4 years) who live in Rossendale is a year less than the Na­tional av­er­age and, for men, nearly six years less than the best bor­ough in the UK.

A year might not seem like a lot, but when I think about it – you can cer­tainly do a lot in a year.

In six years you can ac­com­plish al­most any­thing!

We shouldn’t be liv­ing six years less. While a num­ber of fac­tors have an im­pact on life ex­pectancy, there are a cou­ple of things which we can in­flu­ence which play a ma­jor role.

I was sur­prised to learn that 67 per cent of adults in Rossendale are car­ry­ing ex­cess weight.

That’s 3pc more that the na­tional av­er­age, and a stag­ger­ing 22pc worse than the best bor­ough in the UK.

It’s not just adults who are over­weight ei­ther, nearly 20pc of chil­dren leav­ing pri­mary school in Rossendale are obese and in some ar­eas the per­cent­age is much higher.

Diet is a key fac­tor clearly, but so is phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity.

Only 52pc of adults in Rossendale are deemed phys­i­cally ac­tive, com­pared to a na­tional av­er­age of 57pc and a UK best 69%.

I know we don’t all love sport and leisure, or go­ing to the gym, but many of us can do a lit­tle bit more than we cur­rently do and the team at the Leisure Trust are keen to find more ways to as­sist lo­cal peo­ple in mak­ing that pos­i­tive change.

In the face of those star­tling statis­tics, what is ex­cit­ing for me is that we are way above the na­tional av­er­age in the num­ber of us who would like to be more ac­tive – which shows that peo­ple want to make a change and be health­ier and start to turn some of these alarm­ing facts into pos­i­tive sto­ries of change.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.