unlike modern viewers, they had to get up to change the channel and broadcasting wasn’t 24/7.
Tobacco may have contributed to slimmer waistlines: 58 per cent of men and 28 per cent of women smoked (it’s now about 13 per cent). While studies have shown smoking has a slight increase on metabolism, “the effect might have been larger than those studies show, because [ smoking]... displaces other activities,” Gill says. “We’ve replaced smoking with a cup of coffee and a muffin.” “Sitting down to a table to eat and cooking from scratch are the things people today can learn from the 1960s,” Stanton says.
Gill adds that we should emulate the ’60s approach to treats. “Soft drinks weren’t used as a source of hydration. It’s the normalisation of having soft drink every day, eating takeaway foods, having school tuckshops full of confectionary, or driving to work and expecting to park 10 metres in front of the door,” Gill says.
Jo Mitchell, executive director of the Centre for Population Health in Sydney, said making healthy normal could begin with something as simple as using active transport ( such as a pushbike) and taking the stairs instead of lifts or escalators.
The best way to stop normalising bad habits is to normalise good ones. As Nancy told the Women’s Weekly back in the 1960s, “being fatties together means we can encourage each other to diet.”
*Based on comparable UK figures