- On July 3, 2015
Doctors around the state are getting behind NSW Health’s Make Healthy Normal campaign to prevent and reduce overweight and obesity.
“People’s perception of what is and isn’t a healthy weight really has shifted to the point where unhealthy weight is being identified as healthy.
“It’s hard to solve a health problem when it isn’t recognised as such, even though we are all aware overweight and obesity are very significant health issues in Australia,” AMA (NSW) President, Dr Saxon Smith, said.
“If you want advice on healthy eating, exercise and being a healthy weight, one of the best things you can do is see your GP.
“Your health is the most important factor to your doctor – they are not going to try and sell you weight loss products or attempt to persuade you into joining the latest fad diet.
“You will get good advice and GPs can refer you to other health services, like dieticians, who can provide additional help,” Dr Smith said.
“Putting weight on is easy – food and food advertising is everywhere and a lot what is available isn’t the healthiest thing you could be eating or drinking.
“The good news is that, while losing weight may be hard, avoiding putting it on and trying to maintain a healthy weight can be easier than you think.
“Drinking water instead of fruit juice, sugary soft drinks or alcoholic drinks – except in moderate amounts on special occasions – is something literally everyone can do,” Dr Smith said.
“Weight can be a sensitive issue and there are a lot of unhealthy pressures on people to be unrealistically thin or super fit and we’re not trying to add to those pressures.
“Our target is improving people’s health and the really good news on that front is even small reductions in weight can have significant health benefits.
“Losing five kilos or more can result in drastic drops in lifetime risks of serious health problems, like type two diabetes,” Dr Smith said.
“Being overweight or obese increases your risks of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and some cancers.
“What a lot of people don’t think about is even if you survive a major illness like these, there can be lingering effects.
“Diabetes can lead to blindness or require amputation; cancer can require major surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy; and stroke survivors can be left paralysed or brain damaged.
“Prevention is better than a cure and even small amounts of weight loss can significantly lower your risk for developing these conditions.
“Making small changes today and choosing to Make Healthy Normal could have a profound effect on your quality of life,” Dr Smith said.
You can find more information on Make Healthy Normal at the following websites:
Media contact: Lachlan Jones (02) 9902 8113 / 0419 402 955