100s of titles, one news app for just $10 a month.
Dive Deeper:
Prescribe fitness classes to more obese and inactive people, councils say
The NHS could save more than £30 million if GPs prescribed local leisure services to one million inactive people over…
Former Tory health ministers condemn Boris Johnson’s junk food ‘U-turn’
Delay to restrictions described as ‘unConservative’
Stroke warning: Time you eat your evening meal could increase risk, claims study
Eating meals at irregular times may seem harmless but, according to a recent study, it could be increasing your risk…
Delay to junk food ads ban could ‘blow a hole’ in UK obesity strategy
Failing to stop people eating unhealthily will increase number needing NHS treatment, says former health minister Lord Bethell
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Jamie Oliver blasts junk food BOGOF ban delay as 'wasted opportunity'
Measures set to help tackle childhood obesity have been delayed by the Government
Jamie Oliver hits out at junk food ‘BOGOF’ deal ban delay saying it erodes obesity strategy
The Government’s U-turn on banning multi-buy junk food deals and pre-watershed TV advertising has alarmed health campaigners
Get all your news in one place
Latest National news:
Drivers urged to avoid Tuggeranong Parkway near Lyons after traffic incident
Emergency services are attending a traffic incident involving multiple cars.
Read news from The Economist, FT, Bloomberg and more, with one subscription
Learn More
Swansea channel dredge to start in third quarter of 2022
Much-needed dredging of Swansea Channel, announced last December, is now expected to begin in the third quarter of this year,…
Election day press release about asylum seeker boats ‘a disgrace’, Richard Marles says
Acting prime minister says information released by Liberal party about Sri Lankan boats being intercepted should not have been made…
From Marrickville to Tokyo: Anthony Albanese goes down the rabbit hole and emerges on the world stage
Australia’s new prime minister felt the gravity of the moment as he met with the leaders of the US, India…
'Society abhors attacks of this nature': Coward punch victim on liquid diet for months
The drunken assailant who put the victim in hospital has been sentenced to a two-year intensive correction order.
From analysis to good news, read the world’s best news in one place
Union slams University's $185 million surplus after cuts to staff, courses but uni says it's a one-off
"We're not generating huge amounts of money that we obviously would want to share with staff and students if we…
Queensland’s newest LNP MP sparks glee – from his former state politics opponents
Election of Colin Boyce to federal parliament leads to a series of taunts from state Labor frontbenchers

Prescribe fitness classes to more obese and inactive people, councils say

By Jane Kirby, PA & Nick Wood

More people who are obese and inactive should be prescribed exercise classes at local leisure centres, according to councils. New analysis from the District Councils’ Network (DCN), which commissioned experts at the University of East Anglia, suggests nearly a third of people currently do less than 30 minutes of physical activity per week.

The report found that if GPs prescribed local leisure services to one million inactive people over the next decade this could avoid thousands of cases of disease, save the NHS more than £300 million and extend people’s lives by about 3.7 years. The DCN is calling on the Government to invest in local sport and leisure services, which it argues already have close community links and can work with groups such as charities to focus on hard-to-reach groups.

It comes as some council-operated gyms, swimming pools and sports halls continue to face significant financial challenges to stay open in the wake of the pandemic. According to the DCN, councils are the biggest provider of leisure and fitness services in the country, owning 2,727 leisure centres, 33% of all swimming pools and 31% of the grass pitches in England.

Angie Dale, healthy communities spokeswoman for the DCN, said: “As we emerge from the pandemic, it is vital we embrace this as an opportunity to get the nation fit and healthy, and to continue protecting and supporting our NHS by preventing illness and disease where we can. Our new report shows conclusively that local leisure centres can play a vital role in keeping people fit, and prescribing these services to people can increase life expectancy by up to four years.

“By providing long-term investment and integrating our councils’ excellent leisure and wellbeing services into health systems, we can increase life expectancy and tackle growing health inequalities. This is levelling up in action."

A study earlier this month found that only a minority of obese people were referred by GPs to clubs like Slimming World between 2007 and 2020. Just 3% of adults with a recording of being overweight or obese in primary care in England have been referred to weight management programmes by their GP.

In 2014, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) issued updated guidance saying people with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more could benefit from a GP referral to weight-loss programmes. It added that “where there is capacity” those who are overweight (with a BMI of 25 or more, or lower in black and minority ethnic groups) should not have their access restricted.

For more stories from where you live, visit InYourArea.

What is inkl?
The world’s most important news, from 100+ trusted global sources, in one place.
Morning Edition
Your daily
news overview

Morning Edition ensures you start your day well informed.

No paywalls, no clickbait, no ads
Enjoy beautiful reading

Content is only half the story. The world's best news experience is free from distraction: ad-free, clickbait-free, and beautifully designed.

Expert Curation
The news you need to know

Stories are ranked by proprietary algorithms based on importance and curated by real news journalists to ensure that you receive the most important stories as they break.

Dive Deeper:
Prescribe fitness classes to more obese and inactive people, councils say
The NHS could save more than £30 million if GPs prescribed local leisure services to one million inactive people over…
Former Tory health ministers condemn Boris Johnson’s junk food ‘U-turn’
Delay to restrictions described as ‘unConservative’
Stroke warning: Time you eat your evening meal could increase risk, claims study
Eating meals at irregular times may seem harmless but, according to a recent study, it could be increasing your risk…
Delay to junk food ads ban could ‘blow a hole’ in UK obesity strategy
Failing to stop people eating unhealthily will increase number needing NHS treatment, says former health minister Lord Bethell
One subscription that gives you access to news from hundreds of sites
Jamie Oliver blasts junk food BOGOF ban delay as 'wasted opportunity'
Measures set to help tackle childhood obesity have been delayed by the Government
Jamie Oliver hits out at junk food ‘BOGOF’ deal ban delay saying it erodes obesity strategy
The Government’s U-turn on banning multi-buy junk food deals and pre-watershed TV advertising has alarmed health campaigners
Get all your news in one place