One third of all chronic diseases are preventable and can be traced to four lifestyle risk factors: alcohol and tobacco use, physical activity and poor nutrition. While treating chronic disease takes up half of the overall health budget, we only spend 1.5% of the budget preventing it. The Preventative Health: how much does Australia spend and is it enough? report released today highlights that Australia is ranked 16 out of 31 OECD countries for spending on preventative health, but this is not the reason we should lift our spending. As a nation, we need to spend more on preventative health based on the evidence that shows interventions work.
Our declining levels of physical activity and increasing levels of time spent sedentary are impacting at every level: economically, environmentally, physically, socially and emotionally. While changes need to be made at all levels of government, we can start by making small changes to our own lives to move more and sit less each day. It begins with our own choices and reflecting on how we feel when we break up our sitting time and move more.
For more information go to: fare.org.au