New campaign will help Peterborough residents prevent and tackle common health problems

Peterborough City Hospital exteriors EMN-141118-141223009

Peterborough City Hospital exteriors EMN-141118-141223009

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A new campaign which will help residents prevent and tackle common health problems and live healthily for longer was launched at Peterborough City Hospital yesterday (Monday, February 29).

‘Peterborough: Creating a Healthy City’ will see Peterborough City Council offer residents medically proven information and advice on how to kick poor health into touch by making simple lifestyle changes.

Each month the campaign will focus on a different health issue, starting in March with heart health. The campaign is supported by Peterborough City Hospital, Peterborough and Cambridgeshire Clinical Commissioning Group, Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Local Pharmaceutical Committee and Public Health England.

At the Healthy Peterborough launch on Monday, visitors to the hospital were able to find out more about the five ways to improve heart health: eating a balanced diet that is low in sugar and salt, regularly exercising, maintaining a healthy weight, quitting smoking and limiting alcohol intake.

Councillor Diane Lamb, cabinet member for public health, said: “It’s frightening to think that every year in the city and its rural areas, 200 residents die from heart disease. Of these, 70 people are under the age of 75.

“I know we can’t stop all of these deaths, but we can make a big dent in this figure by helping people lead healthier lives.

“Improving the lives of all our residents and tackling the health issues that they face is one of the council’s biggest priorities. This is why we are proposing to maintain the amount of money we spend on public health, despite a 10 per cent cut in the grant the government gives us to provide these services.

“But we can’t help people unless they’re willing to help themselves. We know that people are busy and may not feel they have the time to eat healthily or exercise, but it’s the small changes that matter.

“It could be as simple as upping your fruit and vegetable intake or walking to the shops instead of driving. Even the smallest changes could have a big impact on your health and ultimately your life expectancy.”

Residents can find out more at www.healthypeterborough.org.uk and follow health tips on the Healthy Peterborough Facebook page and Twitter handle @HealthyPboro.

Dr Liz Robin, director of public health for Peterborough City Council, said: “Many health conditions, such as heart disease, can be directly related to your lifestyle. Your heart pumps 100,000 times each day and like any good machine it needs looking after to remain in good shape.

“We understand that it can be confusing for people to know what a healthy diet looks like or the best way to exercise as there is so much conflicting information out there.

“We want to give local people trustworthy and medically proven advice on how to stay healthier for longer. By making simple changes, such as eating less fat or doing 30 minutes of brisk walking five times a week, people can make a big difference to their own health and increase their overall life expectancy.”

Other health issues to be covered as part of Healthy Peterborough in the coming months include stroke awareness, mental illness, alcohol intake and smoking.