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Healthy motivation?

9th August 2006

15052006_gym1.jpgAccording to a new survey by Cancer Research UK people rate looking good over reducing the risk of cancer as a reason to maintain a healthy body weight.

Cancer Research UK interviewed over 4000 people from around the UK to identify the factors that motivate people to maintain a healthy body weight. The respondents were offered a range of reasons to choose from. Reducing the risk of cancer was selected less frequently than many of the other responses as a benefit of maintaining a healthy body weight.

The survey indicates a lack of knowledge about the link between obesity and cancer risk. Forty per cent of people think looking good is an advantage of maintaining a healthy body weight, compared with 32 per cent for lowering the risk of cancer. Twice as many people (67%) picked reducing the risk of heart disease as the main motivation.

The Director of cancer information at Cancer Research UK, Dr Lesley Walker, said: “This research provides a real insight into the priorities many of us have when it comes to looking after our bodies and the low awareness of the link between obesity and cancer."

Being obese or overweight is one of the most significant preventable causes of cancer in non-smokers; yet rates of obesity are increasing throughout the UK.

Cancer Research UK and Weight Concern have joined forces to develop a weight management programme called Ten Top Tips, designed to fit into daily life and based on the best scientific evidence.

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