On Monday 27th July, Public Health England is launching a major new adult health campaign to seize the opportunity for a national reset moment. Better Health will help capture the imagination of the nation, using this unique moment in time to help kick start our health to eat better and get active. COVID-19 has affected the whole country; for almost everyone, life has had to fundamentally change. But it has also prompted many people to reflect and think more seriously about their health. What’s more, people have been surprised by how able they have been to change their behaviour, with lockdown showing many that they are able to make and sustain changes to their lives.
The Better Health campaign will kick off by supporting individuals on their weight loss journey, but later down the line, the programme will also provide advice and support for quitting smoking, drinking less and looking after your mental health.
Nearly two thirds (63%) of adults in the UK are overweight or living with obesity. Gaining weight is often a gradual process that takes place over a number of years and modern life doesn’t always make it easy. This extra weight causes pressure to build up around vital organs, making it harder for the body to fight against diseases like cancer, heart disease and now COVID-19.
By reducing your weight within a healthy range, you can help cut your risk of being critically ill with COVID-19. To improve health and wellbeing, individuals should aim to have a BMI below 25 and above 18.5. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommends that Black, Asian and minority ethnic groups (BAME) should aim to have a BMI below 23 and above 18.5 to avoid risks to health.
On Monday 27th July, the brand-new Better Health webpage will be available at nhs.uk/BetterHealth. It provides tools to help people manage their weight loss – from checking their BMI, to getting access to free support tools including the NHS 12-week weight loss plan. The NHS 12-week weight loss plan, available via a new app, promotes evidence-based safe and sustainable weight loss. It helps users to make healthier choices, by providing the most up to date evidence-based healthy eating and physical activity advice in a magazine format that enables them to keep track of their calorie intake, portions of fruit and veg, physical activity level and teaches skills to prevent weight gain.
Alongside the free NHS 12-week plan, PHE is also working with a number of well-known weight management providers that will be offering exclusive discounts across their weight loss programmes. Partners include, WW Weight Watchers reimagined, Slimming World and Get Slim, get healthy.
The Better Health webpage will also direct users to the free ‘How Are You’ online health quiz, which will help adults reappraise their health and guide them to relevant support, as well as other proven tools and apps such as Couch to 5K, Active10, Food Scanner and Easy Meals.
Following on from policy announcements which will lay out the government’s plans to help tackle obesity, the Better Health campaign will launch on Monday 27th July with a new 60” TV advert, building up to a full package of radio, digital and out of home advertising and content across social media. Large scale activity will be coupled with targeted and up weighted media to reach more vulnerable groups. PR and partnership activity will also take place from the end of July (TBC), encouraging people to use the moment to kick start their health – to eat better and get active.