Time to get moving

Bendigo Weekly | Bendigo Weekly | 05-May-2017

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It is time to get moving. Get motivated, but more importantly, get real.

Survey after survey, report after report into the declining health standards of Australians show that we are in urgent need of change.

Multi-billion dollar industries have been borne out of humankind’s inability to cope with 20th and 21st century lifestyles.

We shouldn’t need gymnasiums, diet industries, health gurus or vitamin pills. 

These are symptoms of a society sick of, and with, itself. 

We’re so smart and so intelligent, yet we have managed to create a world where over consumption is literally killing us.

We need the gym, the diet and the vitamins to compensate for the sedentary lifestyle that comes too easily to too many Australians. 

Human beings are supposedly the smartest creatures on the planet, but I haven’t seen too many overweight and unfit looking dolphins, cockatoos, kangaroos, koalas etc lately.

We consume so much salt in half the food we ingest that it needs a corresponding amount of sugar to balance the flavours. 

And too many of us don’t even realise what we are doing. Problem is, we’re out of balance.

Completely.

So this week’s confirmation by the state government that it is following through on mandating that all major Victorian food outlets and supermarket chains must display kilojoule contents on their menus, is a good thing. 

But it needs an education campaign to ensure we all know how much of a good thing is too much.

About two thirds of Victorian adults are overweight or obese – and those rates continue to rise each year. The government points out obesity is a major risk factor for heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and cancer, costing us more than $14 billion each year.

Recently released Australian Health Policy Collaboration data shows that 69.6 per cent of Bendigo adults are either overweight or obese. 

About 22 per cent of us have high blood pressure, about 18 per cent of us smoke cigarettes, one third of us have high cholesterol to contend with and almost 70 per cent of adults in Bendigo engage in little or no exercise at all.

It needn’t cost any of us a lot to get motivated and do something. 

But it could cost us a lot if we don’t.

Go for a walk, kick the footy or play basketball with the kids, stop drinking sugary drinks, eat more fruit, vegies, drink more water.

Stop smoking, save money, and cut back on alcohol.

Encourage your friends and family to join you, and you might just surprise yourself at the difference a healthier lifestyle will make to the way you feel.

I’m no health expert, but none of us need to be.

We just need to accept greater responsibility for ourselves and our families when it comes to our health.


twitter@peterkennedy23

pk@bendigopublishing.com

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