‘Change 4 Life’, a nationwide government campaign which encourages people to ‘eat better’ and ‘move more’ to tackle overweight, has the full support of Swindon PCT.
Launched earlier this month, the campaign includes colourful cartoon adverts highlighting the initiative. The move came after Government predictions showed that nearly 60% of the UK population could be obese by 2050. Current obesity figures show that the rate of increase of obesity in children is one of the highest in the world. Government funded research found that while many parents acknowledged childhood obesity as a problem, many also believed the issue did not affect their family.
Jane Leaman, Joint Director of Public Health for Swindon PCT & Swindon Borough Council, commented:
“We all need to address the rise in obesity for the sake of the future health of our children. The Change 4 Life campaign is about trying to create a lifestyle revolution on a huge scale – something which has never been done before. Instead of pointing the finger at parents however, and telling families what to do and what to eat, this campaign offers support, reassurance and information.
“Swindon PCT and Swindon Borough Council actively encourage healthy eating and physical activity and we are making good progress with obesity levels in Swindon. We have continued to tackle obesity by implementing and developing services and programmes focused on both prevention and treatment. Some services we provide and commission include:
• breastfeeding support by midwives
• healthy weaning advice by health visitors
• the national healthy schools programme
• general advice on healthy eating and physical activity by health professionals like school nurses, health visitors and practice nurses
• Steps to Health – an exercise on referral programme that supports patients to exercise more (particularly those with a medical condition)
• Walking/cycling to health programmes
Another extremely successful programme is MEND, a scheme educating both children and parents about healthy eating and exercise. For adults, we offer the weight management programmes Dietbusters and Weight Watchers on referral.”
Local parents can now contact Swindon PCT for a copy of the Change 4 Life ‘top tips for top kids’ leaflet, which has advice for all about how to live a healthy lifestyle. To order your copy contact: Teresa Farr on: 01793 708718
People can also call a dedicated Change 4 Life helpline on 0300 1234567 and speak to specially trained advisors for advice on exercise, nutrition and support services.
For more information about the Change 4 Life campaign, visit: www.nhs.uk/Change4Life