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Are you leading a ‘healthy life’?

A new study has revealed almost 9 in 10 people living in Britain are 'leading unhealthy lives'.

Almost nine in 10 people are putting themselves at risk by leading unhealthy lifestyles, a new report suggests.

The new Health Survey for England found that just 13% of people were leading healthy lives, meaning 87% of English adults were making at least one unhealthy lifestyle choice.

For the first time the survey identified the proportion of people who are not taking care of their health by leading unhealthy lifestyles.

People were quizzed about their alcohol consumption, smoking, whether they eat five portions of fruit or vegetables a day, have low levels of physical activity or are classed as obese.

Overweight & obese adult males in England

Only 13% had no risk factors, but almost one in five (19%) had three or more.

Researchers found that 64% of adults are overweight or obese.

This includes 5% of women and 2% of men who are morbidly obese – meaning they had a body mass index (BMI) score of more than 40.

In 1993, when the survey began, just 1% of women were classed as morbidly obese, according to the data from NHS Digital.

It reached 5% for the first time in 2017.

Meanwhile the survey also revealed how children whose parents are obese are also more likely to be obese themselves.

Overweight & obese adult females in England

More than a quarter (28%) of children of an obese mother were also obese, compared with 8% of children whose mother was not overweight or obese, the figures show.

And 24% of children of an obese father were also obese, compared with 9% of children where the father was not overweight or obese.

Overall, three in 10 children aged two to 15 in England were overweight or obese in 2017.

The 2017 survey also revealed a high rate of people who have undiagnosed diabetes.

Information was gathered on 8,000 adults and 2,000 children through a survey and a nurse visit where various measurements were taken.

This included blood sugar level measurement which suggested that 20% of adults with diabetes are undiagnosed.

Eating at least five portions of fruit/vegetables a day

Other findings from the survey include:

– The proportion of adults with diagnosed diabetes increased between 1994 and 2017, from 3% to 8% among men and from 2% to 5% among women.

– The majority of people were not consuming the recommended five a day, with 29% of adults consuming five or more portions of fruit and vegetables a day and just 18% of two to 15-year-old children reaching the target.

– In 2017 the average man who drank alcohol consumed 15 units a week – exceeding the recommended limit of 14 units. Female drinkers consumed an average of 8.6 units.

– One in three (34%) adults said they were living in chronic pain.

The new survey also provided some figures on social care, including the proportion of adults who had some level of “unmet need”.

Researchers found that 23% of men and 28% of women aged 65 and over needed help with at least one activity such as washing, going to the toilet, getting up and down stairs or in and out of bed, eating or taking medicine.

But 20% of men and 25% of women aged 65 and over had some unmet need with at least one of these activities.

The results paint a grim picture; though many people who are overweight or lead ‘unhealthy lifestyles’ also believe themselves to be in perfect health.

Should more be done to help people achieve a healthier lifestyle – or is the definition of what constitutes a healthy lifestyle too narrow? 

Are you leading a healthy life – and if not, do you think your lifestyle should be changed? Share your views in the comments below 

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Lorraine
3 days ago
1
Thanks for voting!
I have no problems with weight and up to a few weeks ago was actively trying to put weight on following a big weight loss after surgery for Oesophageal cancer. My doctor then warned me that I was officially pre=diabetic so I have made some changes - cutting out sugar and a lot of fat. This seems to be keeping me within the proper limits as regards cholesterol. I cook from scratch, don't smoke, seldom drink. Can't exercise much due to poor mobility but otherwise fairly healthy now
Alicia
4 days ago
2
Thanks for voting!
I am normal weight for my height, I eat a very healthy diet, I do not smoke or drink alcohol, I take exercise (walking). Life is great.
patcaf
4 days ago
3
Thanks for voting!
I have always exercised and eaten a healthy diet. Probably drank a bit too much wine over the years but it is one of life's great pleasures. Two months after I retired , diagnosed with cancer. One year later I am on the mend and life is good: but I still drink too much wine and have a cigar very day.

Two people I know. One a cyclist, did not drink or smoke, very fit.. Had a massive stroke. Other did not drink or smoke either and now has terminal cancer. So what was the point?

Quiet frankly I do not believe anything these experts tell me. Everything in moderation but at 66, I intend to keep on drinking and smoking. Life is for enjoying and having had my brush with cancer , I feel I have quite a few years in me yet.
Darkstar
4 days ago
1
Thanks for voting!
Never believe what researchers say, they argue amongst themselves. Next week a new research will most likely find you are better off sat in your chair having a drink with no stress.
jeanmark
4 days ago
1
Thanks for voting!
Darkstar, we need research to move forward and there will always be those that disagree with a rivals results, but surely that is healthy debate. Of course, results of research today will be different when repeated, that's the reason for research. We need research to constantly explore our beliefs as a way of finding new ways of survival. Having worked in the NHS for nearly 50 years, I continually saw the benefits of research studies. What I saw in the 60's changed dramatically through time and most change was based on research findings. If research had been considered a useless use of time would we have come as far as we have?

Having said all of that, I do believe everything in moderation and each person being responsibility for their own well being, rather than criticise the state for being unable to fund and cure all ills.
Sixtyodd
4 days ago
2
Thanks for voting!
I've just returned from a 16 month cycle tour, 27,000 Kms, I cook from scratch every day, I exercise 6 out of 7 days a week and I feel great. I drink quite a lot of but hey, not everyone is perfect
Sixtyodd
4 days ago
2
Thanks for voting!
***quite a lot of wine***
alanc93
4 days ago
2
Thanks for voting!
I am a member of the church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints and keep what is called the word of wisdom'
No tea no coffee No alcohol No smoking i am 93 years old
and very fit.
Alicia
4 days ago
1
Thanks for voting!
MrsPat
4 days ago
1
Thanks for voting!
I cook nice food from both Lidl and Morrisons plus our local farm shop. We have always tried to keep healthy and a good diet is key to this. You are what you eat.
Bald123
4 days ago
0
Thanks for voting!
Not with the amount of beer I drink! I need to loose weight and exercise more.
Richard65
5 days ago
4
Thanks for voting!
Sadly, I think that a lot of the younger generation coming up now lack the basic cooking skills. I know when I was a lad, we had domestic science at school. Also we had mother's and grandmothers who would teach and show us how to cook foods.

Basic things like how to gut a fish, or even cooking fresh fish. Making pastry, my grans steak & kidney puddings were to die for, and homemade Spotted dick and steam puddings.

I bet no one knows how to make dough boys with beef stew anymore.

Now a days mums seem too busy writing txt messages, or talking on their mobiles. Here's £5, go and get yourself a Happy meal from McDonald's.

Kids fed, job done.
Wilf
6 days ago
3
Thanks for voting!
Possibly would be my comment. I used to smoke many years ago. I have always had a few drinks every weekend especially my favorite Guinness! I exercise most days by at least taking the dogs out twice a day. BUT I do eat too much red meat. I am not a vegetarian. i have lived a lot in cities with pollution. The proof will be in the pudding as they say when I meet my maker!
jeanmark
4 days ago
0
Thanks for voting!
Interestingly Wilf, when I was a student nurse, doctors prescribed Guinness for patients feeling 'run down' and sherry for those with a poor appetite!
Wilf
4 days ago
1
Thanks for voting!
Great prescriptions Jean. It probably helps relax people. One of my daughters boyfriends Grandfather! has just died at 94 and he drank a shot of whisky daily! Good for him I would say.

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