North Yorkshire County Council is supporting a national campaign that encourages people to take the One You online health quiz that gives them a health MOT and directs them to personalised tools and advice.
The quiz is part of the One You campaign which is designed to help adults, particularly those in middle age, to take control of their health to enjoy significant benefits now, and in later life. New analysis from Public Health England (PHE) shows modern life is taking its toll on health, with eight out of 10 of the middle aged either weighing too much, drinking too much or not exercising enough.
Everyday habits – such as eating too much processed food; drinking more than is recommended; continuing to smoke; and not being active enough – are responsible for around 40% of all deaths in England, and cost the NHS more than £11 billion a year. Some diagnosed cases of type 2 diabetes can be prevented by lifestyle changes such as exercise, weight loss and healthy eating.
Latest figures reveal that life expectancy at older ages is at record levels, yet many people are spending their retirement living in ill health. Currently 15 million people in Britain today are living with a long-term health condition, yet studies show living healthily in middle age can double your chances of being healthy when you are 70.
“Lots of us spend our lives working very hard, not sleeping enough and not always having time to exercise, so it can be really difficult to prioritise our health” said County Councillor David Chance, Executive Member for Stronger Communities and Public Health. “But it’s vital to find out how well you really are, so that you can get the advice and support you need.
“It’s never too late to improve your health and making small changes now can have a huge impact on your life in the future: it can even help to reverse some preventable diseases. With 2017 stretching ahead, there’s no better time to start living better and enjoying the health benefits this will bring.
“To put it simply, people need to eat better, be more active, stop smoking and consider their drinking. Taking the ‘How Are You’ quiz takes your lifestyle information, gives you a health score and then links to free localised, personalised information, apps and tools”.
Although people in North Yorkshire are generally healthy, there are variations across the county. The percentage of adults who do not take enough exercise range from 19% in Craven to 35% in Scarborough, and nearly one in four North Yorkshire adults are classed as obese. The number of adults who smoke varies from 13% in Hambleton to 20% in Scarborough – higher than the England average of 18.6%.
Supporting the One You campaign complements the work the county council is already doing with partner organisations to combat risky drinking through the North Yorkshire Alcohol Strategy. It is also funding a smoking cessation service called Smokefreelife North Yorkshire and lifestyle weight management programmes in each of the seven district council areas.
The One You online quiz sits alongside PHE’s other online tools like the Heart Age tool, which gives you your ‘heart age’ based on you age and lifestyle and we would also encourage people to take up their NHS Health Check invitation when they receive it.
For more information and to take the How Are You? online quiz, go to www.nhs.uk/oneyou/how-are-you or search for “One You” online.