Healthy Eating and Physical Activity

Living with overweight or obesity increases the risks of diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, musculoskeletal conditions and some cancers. As well as people’s physical health, living with obesity can also have an impact on mental wellbeing and has been associated with anxiety and depression.

Living with overweight or obesity increases the risks of diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, musculoskeletal conditions and some cancers. As well as people’s physical health, living with obesity can also have an impact on mental wellbeing and has been associated with anxiety and depression.

For those not living with obesity, what we eat and how much we move are still important factors that influence our health and wellbeing. Furthermore, food shapes all our lives, our communities and our environment be it via the way we produce it, package it, transport it, or who we buy it from and eat it with. The increased awareness and interest in the role of food on climate change and our health as well as a growing consciousness about food poverty, present opportunities for change.

Everyone experiences multiple barriers and challenges to eating and moving for good health. These factors are complex and broad; for example: how easy it is to walk or cycle in the community; if we live surrounded by fast food shops; the skills we acquire as we grow up (e.g. cooking, physical literacy); or if we can afford to choose healthy food or afford to access sport equipment/facilities.

Healthy eating and physical activity, therefore, is not just about individuals but involves looking at the facilitators and barriers that can only be solved by involving communities and making changes to the local system or built environment.

We have built on previous childhood obesity workshops with health and care stakeholders, community organisations, schools and parents. We have identified 5 broad domains to be explored in order to provide structure to our whole system approach:

  • Food plan: Sustainable food, food poverty and the food environment
  • Physical activity, Leisure centres and Parks and Open Spaces
  • Schools and Nurseries
  • Community and voluntary sector
  • Healthy weight pathways

Click here for more insight and background on physical activity in Nottingham