How small steps add up to big health changes

obesity (cropped)
20-01-2016

One in four adults in the UK is “obese” according to the Health Survey for England. Shockingly, that figure could rise to as much as 50% of all adults by 2050 if current trends continue.

The problem is not just confined to adults. The National Child Measurement Programme shows that a fifth of all children are obese when they leave primary school at the age of 11 - and health experts believe those weight problems can last them a lifetime.

It’s one of the reasons why the National Obesity Forum is leading its JanUary awareness campaign, capitalising on the often good intentions people start the New Year with by asking them to make some small changes to improve their health and fitness levels. 

Using the hashtag #dosomethinggoodforU, the campaign urges people to join a kind of national New Year’s resolution to help improve the UK’s health.  The message is that you don’t have to be running marathons, or give up bread and pasta forever - but that “baby steps” can add up to a real change in your health and wellbeing.

Here are some simple ideas:

GET MOVING

You don’t have to sign up for the New York marathon or commit to an expensive gym membership: start by resolving to go for a walk five times a week, take the kids on a weekend bike ride, or check out one of the many exercise videos on YouTube

PUT SOME ‘SWAPS’ INTO YOUR DIET

There are plenty of weight loss programmes you can follow, and diets ranging from low-carb, to low-fat, to Atkins or the 5:2. But simply swapping some of your unhealthier habits can have a significant impact on your weight. Try unsalted nuts instead of crisps, home-made popcorn or a piece of fruit instead of a chocolate bar, fizzy drinks or tea/ coffee with sugar in for sparkling water, or sugary cereals for porridge with berries.

CURB YOUR DRINKING

The new government guidelines announced this month set a new recommended limit of 14 units per week for both men and women, with some alcohol-free days each week. Use a unit calculator to tot up how much you are drinking, and remember, if you’re trying to lose a few Christmas pounds, alcohol contains almost as many calories gram for gram as fat.

BE BALANCED

“A little of everything does you good,” as the old adage goes. Nutritionists stand by advice that a healthy balanced diet should include plenty of fruit and veg, starchy carbs, protein and good fats. Try to include some protein at every meal, and cut down on sugar, salt and saturated fat. The Change 4 Life website is full of great tips, including a Sugar Smart app you can download.

Latest Posts

2018
April
18th - Brad's marathon fundraiser for LionHeart
18th - LionHeart moving to Birmingham
17th - LionHeart survey will help shape future support services
5th - Top tips to beat stress
February
28th - Auction of vintage surveying equipment raises over £6000 for LionHeart
26th - Bookings open for 2018 John O'Halloran Symposium
1st - Mental health ambassadors share experiences in short film
1st - How to talk to someone you're worried about
January
24th - John O'Halloran Symposium 2018
15th - Auction of vintage surveying equipment will raise money for LionHeart
4th - LionHeart ambassador highlights mental health in property
3rd - Being kinder to yourself in 2018
2017
December
20th - LionHeart
18th - 10 ways to keep your cool this Christmas
November
29th - 12 reasons you should care about mental health
14th - LionHeart Impact Report 2017 published
14th - Do you know how much you are drinking?
8th - CBRE employees raise thousands for LionHeart
6th - Support LionHeart's Christmas hamper campaign!
October
16th - LionHeart lottery launched online
10th - World Mental Health Day
9th - LionHeart launches new will-writing webinar
2nd - Work Life Week
September
11th - Pension Awareness Week
7th - World Suicide Prevention Day
August
31st - LionHeart takes part in Wellness 17
14th - Tributes to 'Grandfather' of LionHeart
9th - Men twice as likely to suffer work-related mental health problems
July
25th - Farewell to two long-serving LionHeart trustees
June
28th - LionHeart's 10 steps to wellbeing with Knight Frank
8th - LionHeart helping more people than ever before
May
24th - "I hope something positive will come from dad's suicide"
18th - Mental health campaigner Jonny Benjamin to speak at Bristol Symposium
11th - Huge turnout for London John O'Halloran Symposium
April
20th - Row For James team confirmed to speak at John O'Halloran Symposium
20th - No time limit on grief
6th - LionHeart signs up to Time to Change Pledge
March
23rd - 'Switch On' to LionHeart's new webinars
8th - Top tips this No Smoking Day
February
16th - New trustees take up positions on LionHeart's Board
2nd - LionHeart working with Society of Chartered Surveyors Ireland
2nd - "Never under-estimate the power of talking"
1st - LionHeart counselling now requested by 1 in 5 people we support
January
23rd - Expanded work-related support for RICS professionals
12th - Tributes to long-serving LionHeart trustee Billy Jenkins
10th - National Obesity Awareness Week
3rd - 5 reasons to NOT make a New Year's resolution
2016
December
13th - Huge rise in the number of people supported by LionHeart
November
22nd - Emergency help for flood victims
15th - LionHeart launches festive fundraising campaign
3rd - LionHeart unveils new look and expanded services
2nd - Can you design LionHeart's Christmas card?
October
19th - New wellbeing workshops for APC candidates
3rd - Could you be one of our next trustees?
September
15th - Surveyor's suicide prompts industry mental health project
June
16th - Men and stress
14th - Help shape the future of support by taking our survey
8th - A carer's story
6th - Carers’ life chances being damaged by lack of support and awareness
May
26th - Mental health event remembers company MD who took his life
4th - 'Why wait for help?'
April
25th - CBRE’s RICS members donate £16,680 to LionHeart
21st - Mental health symposium will remember company MD who took his life
20th - Sharing the burden of a serious illness
12th - CV mistakes and how to avoid them
March
14th - LionHeart working with LGBT networking and support group Freehold
8th - Change your habits this No Smoking Day
February
25th - Tributes to former chairman of LionHeart trustees Frederick Jones
4th - It's Time to Talk
January
25th - Countdown to 10th annual Crypt Factor
20th - How small steps add up to big health changes
7th - Should you go Dry for January?
6th - New Year divorce spike predicted
5th - Flooding victims receive help from LionHeart
4th - Planning for retirement with LionHeart
4th - Financial know-how for young professionals
2015
December
23rd - Financial help for flooding victims still available
23rd - Merry Christmas from all at LionHeart
15th - Hosting a Christmas gathering? 10 ways to keep your cool
8th - Dealing with loneliness at Christmas
7th - Emergency grants available following Storm Desmond floods
November
26th - Living with a serious illness
26th - RICS London to Paris bike ride completed
20th - What are your rights as a carer?
17th - Am I an addict? 14 Questions to ask yourself
16th - RICS president’s London to Paris bike ride to benefit LionHeart
12th - What is counselling and how does it work?
4th - Why I am leaving a legacy to LionHeart
4th - LionHeart’s top 10 stress-busting tips
October
28th - Disconnected? Spotting and dealing with work-related stress
21st - Survey reveals key issues RICS members face
September
30th - Worcester branch donates in memory of Paul Weaver and Jonathan Chilton
May
11th - The Helpfulness of Mindfulness
April
27th - LionHeart Announces All Round Increases in Service Use and Donations
Helpline 0845 6039057* or     024 7646 6696