Campaign plans to make Interior residents healthier

IHA’s Healthy Communities Initiative strives to improve the health of residents

Interior residents are not as healthy as they could be and changing that trend is the focus of a public campaign.

More than 80 per cent of the population has at least one or more risk factors for chronic disease which include being a smoker, being physically inactive, eating an unhealthy diet, or being overweight.

“We all know that healthy eating, being physically active, and not smoking can make us healthier but these changes can often be difficult to achieve on our own,” said Lex Baas, with the Interior Health Authority’s promotion and prevention department.

“When we live in a healthy community it is much easier for us to make healthy choices every day.”

IHA’s Healthy Communities Initiative strives to improve the health of residents through policy and environmental changes that help make the healthy choice the easy choice.

By partnering with local governments, IHA will help identify community priorities and develop action plans to address areas such as protection from second hand smoke, access to healthy food, the availability of parks and other green spaces, and opportunities for recreation.

“Many local governments have already been doing great work to improve the health of citizens,” said Baas.

“Our Healthy Communities Initiative will not only help support this work, it will build upon it to ensure healthy living is top of mind when policy decisions are made.”

For more information on the initiative, go to www.interiorhealth.ca.