Embrace a healthier diet this new year

If you've overdone it a bit with festive food and drink then January is the perfect time to make some small changes to your diet which could make a big difference to your health and well-being.

The first Healthy Peterborough campaign of 2017 will focus on advice and support which can help everyone enjoy a balanced diet.

This is important because becoming overweight or obese increases your risk of getting type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some cancers.

Eating healthily starts with enjoying a balanced diet. The types of food you choose to eat, and their proportions in your diet, are key to ensuring you get the right nutrients to keep you fit and healthy.

The five food groups are: fruits and vegetables, carbohydrates, dairy, protein and fats. To help you achieve the right balance, the Eatwell Guide offers an easy way to check that you have the right proportion of each food group in your diet. You can find out more about the Eatwell Guide online

Councillor Diane Lamb, cabinet member for public health, said: "New year is a great time to make a few changes to your diet. If you start with achievable goals you will quickly see and feel a difference in your health and well-being and will be more likely to stick to your new regime.

"There is plenty of support and advice available for adults and families, including lots of information on the Healthy Peterborough website. I'd urge anyone who has a few pounds to lose or would just like some more ideas for eating healthily to visit the site and see how they could achieve a healthy weight, give themselves more energy or cut their risk of developing serious illness."

Cutting down on salt and fat are important elements in improving your diet and consequently your overall health. The campaign is offering plenty of useful tips and advice regarding how to make these changes; whether that's from cutting down on takeaways or tips for making healthier choices, to recipe ideas and what to look for on food labels.

Getting active is a great way to lose weight and have some fun. Fit for Life is a free 10-week healthy lifestyle course for anyone aged over 16, who is overweight, with a body mass index of 25 or more or who has certain health conditions. For information about the course or to book your place call 01733 207187.

Adults aren't the only ones who should be eating healthily, children should also be encouraged to follow the advice of the Eatwell Guide and establish good eating habits which should last them a lifetime. There is help available for any children aged between four and 17 years old who are above a healthy weight at the MoreLife clubs which run for ten weeks at venues in Peterborough. 

These clubs are free to any qualifying child and are a great way for families to learn to enjoy healthy food and get active together. For more information or to book a place call 0800 376 56 55 or email livehealthy@peterborough.gov.uk.

Dr Liz Robin, director of public health at Peterborough City Council, added: "At this time of year there is plenty of advice around regarding weight loss or the latest fad diet, this can be a bit bewildering and make it hard to know how to start or which information to follow.

"The Healthy Peterborough website has plenty of straightforward advice making it simple and easy for you to make a few changes. They don't have to be dramatic but they could make a huge difference to your quality of life."

For more advice about eating healthily and the clubs and support available visit the Healthy Peterborough website.  

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