Council launching new healthy living app to fight obesity

A new phone app that encourages residents to lead healthier lifestyles is set to be launched by Cannock Chase District Council |in the summer.

The app, 'Cannock Chase Can', will help residents monitor their health, eating habits and physical activity, as well as offering challenges and ideas to boost their wellbeing.

It is part of a health improvement programme being rolled out across the Cannock Chase district in response to concerns about obesity levels in the area.

In 2018/19, some 70 per cent of adults in Cannock Chase were either overweight or obese, according to Public Health England and Sport England figures. This was above the national level of 62.3 per cent and West Midlands level of 65.6 per cent.

Just over a quarter of 4-5 year-olds in the district – 25.5 per cent – had “excess weight”, compared to the national level of 22.6 per cent and regional figure of 23.8 per cent.

In November 2019, Cannock Chase Council backed the Government’s childhood obesity action plan and committed to tackling the issue in the district.

On Thursday the council’s cabinet learned more about the Cannock Chase Can programme that has been developed to help residents of all ages to lead healthier lives.

Marketing and campaigns officer Katie McBey said: “Over the last 18 months or so we have been working to develop the district-wide health improvement programme. It will launch in June across the district.

Information

“Residents can sign up to the programme on the Cannock Chase Council mobile app and create things such as target weight and personal wellness journeys. There will be information about healthy eating, physical activity and advice on how to make healthy lifestyle choices.

“The programme will include educational projects with local schools and 10 will be involved in the first year. Food for Life will make good food the easy choice and healthy meals the normality for everyone to enjoy.”

The council is now working with community groups to take the programme forward and the app is set to be tested out in May before its launch, the meeting was told.

Council leader George Adamson said a number of organisations had been keen to get involved, including the Clinical Commissioning Group.

He added: “It does seem a long time since we made the clear commitment to Cannock Chase district and it’s all coming to fruition now. It’s excellent.”

Councillor Christine Mitchell, cabinet member for culture and sport, said: “We have had a really good creative team working on it. It’s a really exciting project and I hope people will get on board and use it for the benefit of all our residents – even non-residents if they can pick it up where they live.”

Councillor Christine Martin, cabinet member for health and wellbeing, said: “They have done a fantastic job. I have attended the community group meetings where it has been presented and support there has been unanimous. Everyone is 100 per cent behind this.”

Councillor Alan Pearson, cabinet member for community safety and partnerships, said: “Anything to make our residents and their children fitter and healthier has got to be good.”

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