How does your New Year's resolution compare?
Medibank encourages Australians to join the community at #GenBetter to support each other in their New Year's resolutions.
Despite persistent New Year's resolutions to exercise more and to lose more weight, Australians are just like their counterparts in the UK, US, Germany, Italy and France, and seem to struggle to achieve their goals.
Questioning over 4,000 residents of the UK, US, China, Japan, Germany, Italy, France and Australia, the Medibank Generation Better research revealed that respondents in most countries put exercising and losing weight as their top two New Year's resolutions for 2014.
The research showed that 44% of Australians have a goal to lose weight in 2014 and two-thirds thought eating better would improve their health, despite less than 15% currently eating the recommended '5-a-day' of at least two servings of fruit and three servings of vegetables and less than 18% wanting to improve their healthy cooking skills.
Commenting on the findings, Dr Ian Boyd, Medibank's Medical Director says: "It can be daunting trying to lose weight or exercise more.
"Rather than setting general health goals about losing weight, more tangible targets can help you better. Setting out a healthy eating plan for the week or committing to doing you weekly shop on a Sunday afternoon for example, will lead to better decisions and eating the right foods."
The research also showed that nearly two-thirds of Australians either want to exercise more or start exercising in 2014, but more than half of us don't actually like exercise or find it boring. It reveals that Australians, known for being a sporty and outdoor nation, loath exercise more than any other country - marginally more than the US and the UK, but significantly more than respondents in China, Japan, Germany, Italy and France.
"Don't put off exercise because you think it has to be done at the gym, do something else instead - take the dog for a walk to the park where you, the children and the dog can play; instead of a coffee date go for a walk with a friend; or get out in the garden with the kids rather than watching TV.
"With chronic diseases such as diabetes on the rise, we can all take small steps look after our health better. Those small steps can add up to make a real difference to your health, so make your 2014 New Year's resolution something you can stick to," Dr Boyd said.
Medibank has launched a series of activities and initiatives around the country to encourage Australians to support each other and share their own individual health habits and New Year's resolutions via Twitter, Instagram and Google+ using #GenBetter. Head to www.generationbetter.com.au to see how people are inspiring each other to create healthier futures.
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