Research has found that nearly half of Londoners have pledged to take more responsibility for their health now that covid precautions have been eased, writes Sanjana Idnani.
The research, conducted on behalf of private healthcare and gym operating charity Nuffield Health, found that 52 per cent of Londoners are now more aware of actions that can boost their physical and mental health.
The findings from Nuffield Health’s Healthier Nation Index showed that, over the course of the lockdown, 47 per cent of Londoners had used food as a treat more frequently, yet more than one-third found it harder to eat healthily during the last 18 months.
Other findings from the survey suggest that despite all the pieces of advice, encouragement and viral social media fitness sessions with the likes of coach Joe Wicks, 1-in-10 Londoners still admitted to having not spent any time doing even moderate exercise over the last year.
Only 16 per cent – about 1-in-6 of us – say they reached the NHS guideline of 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week.
The survey found that more than one-third of Londoners, 37 per cent, had not spent any time on their mental health.
There have been other surveys conducted recently in Croydon which seem to support the findings. A survey by Croydon Healthwatch found 60 per cent saying that their mental health was adversely affected by the impact of the pandemic.
Now that covid-19 precautions have eased, Londoners are saying that they plan to invest more time and money into their mental health and physical health.
Researchers for Nuffield Health found that Londoners plan to spend an average of £2,094 on their physical health over the next year. Gym fees at a Nuffield Health gym (there are three in Croydon, on Surrey Street, at the Colonnades on the Purley Way, and in Norbury) works out at more than £700 in a year.
The expected spend on counselling or therapy sessions averaged at £351 per year for Londoners, more than twice the national average.
On average, those in the capital also plan to spend more on meditation or sleep apps compared to the rest of the UK.
Dr Davina Deniszczyc, Nuffield Health’s medical director, said, “The multiple lockdowns we have experienced over the last year have understandably taken a toll on the mental and physical health of everyone in London and across the UK.
“It is really encouraging to see that Londoners are planning to take positive action to boost their mental and physical health post-lockdown.”
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