News Video | Policy | GPs | Hospitals | Medical | Mental Health | Welfare | Search

 


Obesity squeezes household and national finances

Obesity squeezes household and national finances


Obesity is a growing problem for New Zealand – and it’s also becoming a costly one, says 5+ A Day.

Thirty-one per cent of New Zealand adults and 11 per cent of New Zealand children are now obese, according to a recent Ministry of Health report. And it lays the blame on diets high in salt and saturated fat, and not enough exercise.

5+ A Day nutritionist Bronwen Anderson says the latest figures are alarming.

“Obesity increases a person's risk of developing type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease,” says Bronwen. “Dealing with the complications of these conditions has not just consequences for the individuals, but also has huge cost consequences for the health system.

“Childhood obesity is of extra concern as if it is not addressed it can have effects on long term health and longevity. Obesity can also impact on life in all sorts of other ways.”

Health experts agree that by eating more fruit and vegetables, New Zealanders would have a more balanced diet and be healthier. They would also help the country’s finances by helping to reduce expenditure on treating the diseases of obesity.

And eating more healthily would also help household budgets.

Making lunch at home is a cost-effective and easy way to boost fruit and vegetable intake and cut calories, says Bronwen.

A homemade sandwich with ham, mustard, egg, lettuce, tomato and cucumber, a pottle of low-fat yoghurt and a nectarine will cost on average just $3.37 and contains 361 calories and 8g of fat.

Meanwhile, a fast-food combo meal of a chicken burger, regular chips and drink costs on average $10.50 and contains 659 calories and 24g of fat.

“Taking a few minutes to put together a homemade lunch can have an impact on overall calorie, vitamin and mineral intake and decrease the overall amount of saturated fat for the day. But not only that, the healthier lunch is much, much cheaper,” says Bronwen.

Carolyn Cairncross from the New Zealand Nutrition Foundation says exposing children to a wide range of fruit and vegetables at an early age is important in setting healthy eating habits for the future.

“Establishing a liking for fruit and vegetables early in life means children will continue eating these healthy foods when they are adults,” says Carolyn. “People who eat lots of fruit and vegetables are less likely to be overweight and having lower rates of diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.

To encourage people to eat more fruit and vegetables, the 5+ A Day Challenge, starting on February 1, encourages New Zealanders to add an extra serving of fruit or vegetable to their day to boost their health and wellbeing.

“This is such a simple Challenge but one which can have an impact on health. Just adding one serving, which is what fits in the palm of your hand, is not a big ask,” says Bronwen.

The month-long Challenge will run through the 5+ A Day Facebook page (www.facebook.com/5adayNZ) where people will be able to find recipes and tips on how to add an extra serving to their day.

Visit www.5aday.co.nz for inspiration and details on how to enter the 5+ A Day Challenge.


ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Kiwi Pride: Accolades For Film About Man Who Falls In Love With A Stick

A short animated film written and directed by New Zealand born Matthew Darragh has been selected for the Courts des îles, International Festival of Short Fiction Films. More>>

ALSO:

Anniversaries: Vivid Memories Four Years After Christchurch Quake

Four years ago, an earthquake that would change the lives of thousands shook Christchurch at 12.51 p.m. More>>

ALSO:

Environment 'n' Conservation: Slash Meets Tāne The Tuatara

Rock and Roll superstar and former Guns 'n' Roses guitarist Slash visited Zealandia Ecosanctuary along with collaborating band Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators. More>>

Foo Fighters: Exclusive Show In Support Of Music Foundation

Frontier Touring has today announced that the Foo Fighters will play a last minute intimate and exclusive benefit show at the Auckland Town Hall this Friday February 20 with all profits going to The New Zealand Music Foundation. More>>

ALSO:

Canterbury Quakes: Feedback Sought On Short-Listed Memorial Designs

Six short-listed designs for the Canterbury Earthquake Memorial have been released for public input... The Memorial will honour the victims of Canterbury’s earthquakes and acknowledge the suffering of all those who lived through them as well as the heroism of those who participated in the rescue and recovery operations. More>>

ALSO:

Celia Lashlie: Legacy Will Live On

Social justice advocate Celia Lashlie leaves a legacy that will continue to have a positive impact on the lives of New Zealanders for years to come, Labour Leader Andrew Little says. “Celia was a powerful voice for reason, sense and compassion. Her work, particularly with teenage boys, was ground-breaking." More>>

ALSO:

Obituary: Sad Farewell To PPTA Activist Robin Duff

Duff has been a long-time fixture of the association... Most recently Duff has been working hard to support Canterbury teachers through the quakes that devastated the region. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Health
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news