1 in 4 Canadians Not in Good Physical Health: Survey

Nearly a quarter of Canadians say they’re not in good physical health, a new survey finds.

This, despite having access to online apps, in-home training and access to the latest nutritional information.

The new Desjardins survey was released on Aug. 21.

“Proper nutrition and physical activity are essential to preventing things like heart disease and cancer,” said Desjardins’ EVP of wealth management and life and health insurance Gregory Chrispin.

Speaking of physical activity, the results were telling.

More than half (55 per cent) of respondents who rated their physical activity as fair or poor were female, and 45 per cent were male.

When it comes to exercise, almost 30 per cent indicated they do not participate in any form of physical activity. And of those who do, many (26 per cent) say the costs associated with exercise (programs, equipment, memberships, classes) requires a significant financial compromise within their budget.

Where diet is concerned, experts say that eating less processed food and portion control are ways to be healthier, but one in five respondents admit they don’t regularly eat fresh foods.

In addition, nearly 30 per cent don’t pay attention to portion sizes and 23 per cent frequently overeat to feel good.

As was the case with exercise, the cost of eating also comes into play.

Forty-four per cent say that they make financial compromises to integrate costs related to their eating habits into their budget.

To further help Canadians focus on prevention as a way to live healthy, Desjardins is partnering with the Heart & Stroke Foundation and the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS).

Over the next three years Desjardins will donate more than $1 million to the following programs:

Heart & Stroke - The Breakthrough Fund

Created to build a network of funders, and to drive ground-breaking research and its potential impact on the health of Canadians. Breakthroughs like the discovery of a drug that can shield the brain from stroke damage, or understanding and preventing SCAD, a mysterious condition that causes heart attacks in young and otherwise healthy women.

“Nine in 10 Canadians have at least one risk factor for heart disease and stroke,” said Heart & Stroke CEO Yves Savoie.

“This fund supports researchers whose work holds great promise in terms of our efforts to promote health and prevent disease.”


Canadian Cancer Society - It’s My Life!

Research shows that about half of all cancers can be prevented. CCS is working to make that a reality for Canadians with It’s My Life!, an interactive, evidence-based tool that teaches people about risk factors they can modify to reduce their cancer risk by making simple changes.

“With nearly 1 in 2 Canadians expected to be diagnosed with cancer in their lifetime, now more than ever we need people to take action to reduce their cancer risk,” said Canadian Cancer Society president and CEO Lynne Hudson.

“Eating well and making healthy choices are small but important steps to stay on the path of great health at any age.”

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