National Obesity Awareness Week (14-20 January)

Fri, 18 Jan 2019

People of all ages, young and old, are being urged to take a moment to consider their health and the simple steps they can take to improve it as part of National Obesity Awareness Week, which takes place from 14-20 January.

Eating healthily

It’s an ideal time just after the festive period to consider what you eat.

Eating healthily is all about planning in advance and ensuring you have an idea of how eating a healthy, balanced diet is an important part of maintaining good health, and can help you feel your best.

Councillor Jane Evison, portfolio holder for transforming lifestyles at East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: “Getting to know your own health is important and where tools are available to encourage our motivation to be healthy, where possible I would encourage people to use them.

“We all have busy lives and most of us have access to smart devices, such as mobile phones where we can download the apps like Couch to 5K, Alcohol Checker and Easy Meals.”

Search ‘One You’ to take the ‘How Are You’ online health quiz.


Just ten continuous minutes of brisk walking every day gets the heart pumping and can make you feel better, more energetic and improve your mood.

Over time, it can lower the risk of serious illnesses like heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

Whether you’re walking to work, stepping out at lunchtime, walking to the shops or local park or taking the dog for a walk, or just walking in your rural village, there are lots of ways you can fit ten minutes of brisk walking into your life.

Councillor Evison added: “There is a free One You Active 10 app which shows how much brisk walking you are doing and where you can fit ten minute bursts of brisk walking into your day.

“The app also sets you brisk walking goals and provides hints and tips to keep you going. Search ‘Active 10’ online to find out more or to download the app.”

Childhood obesity

Public Health England’s Change4Life is their flagship programme for preventing childhood obesity. Obesity is a major risk factor in many life-threatening and long-term conditions, including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, strokes and some cancers. Change4Life aims to improve those health behaviours, such as poor diet and lack of physical activity which can lead to obesity, particularly in children.

Type ‘Change4Life’ into your search engine for more information.

Councillor Evison went on to say: “Our residents make many choices every day on how they wish to live their lives and in the East Riding, we are trying to make it easier for them to make the healthier choice.”

Gentle chair-based exercises

While exercise can help with obesity, it is also good for our general health. Getting regular exercise may prove difficult for people with limited mobility, but there really is no reason why it should.

Gentle chair exercises can help stimulate the heart rate and encourage flexibility and mobility using gentle, controlled exercises, all of which can be done from a sitting position.

They are designed for those people who struggle to walk or stand for long periods of time or just want to keep fit by doing a gentle exercise class.

The exercises also help reduce the risk of falls and enable people to live longer and independently.

Which chair exercises can you do at home?

  • Chest stretch
  • Upper-body twist
  • Hip marching
  • Ankle stretch
  • Arm raises
  • Neck rotation
  • Neck stretch

To view images and instructions on how to do these exercises, visit the NHS webpage at https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/exercise/sitting-exercises/#chest-stretch