The first step to better health for Australia

Most of us think about making healthy changes at least weekly. What stops us from making the leap?

Taking steps to better health makes you feel good – that’s something we can all agree on.

When you feel nourished from filling up on clean and wholesome foods, bright and energised from getting out and being active, and calm and centred in your mind, those are all good feelings. And the sense of personal achievement you get from reaching your goals and taking control of your own wellbeing is the best feeling of all.

But we don’t need to convince you of that. Chances are, better health is already on your mind. 84% of Australians say they think about improving their health at least once a week. 42% say they think about it every day.

That’s a lot of thinking. It’s the doing that’s the hard part.

We asked Australians* how they really feel about taking the first step to better health. What motivates them, what troubles them, and what they think they could do to get started.

Here’s what we learned…

There are plenty of reasons to be healthy

89% of Australians say that when you take the first steps to improving your health, you feel good about it. Beyond that, why else would we take the first step?

  • Physical fitness and appearance are the top reasons people name.
  • Half say they’re motivated by family and friends.
  • And 1 in 4 say it’s milestone events that give them that extra push to make changes.

Better health means different things to different people

  • 3 in 4 say it means being more physically active.
  • 3 in 4 say it’s about eating well.
  • Half say mental wellbeing is important.
  • 1 in 5 say access to health services.
  • And 1 in 2 say better health equals happiness.

What stops us from taking the first step?

Over half of Australians say it’s too expensive and too hard to take the first step to better health. And 49% say they don’t know where to start. The answer is – start somewhere. Even a small step can give you the momentum you need to keep going.

So, what could you do?

  • 70% say the first step to better health is eating more fruit and vegetables.
  • 65% say it’s drinking more water.
  • 63% say it’s cutting back on the amount they eat.
  • 1 in 4 say getting a friend involved is a good place to start.
  • And half say they need to be better informed about health – mental and physical.

There are a few things that almost all of us agree on

  • Taking the first step will have longer term benefits.
  • Better health is about more than being healthy –it’s about happiness.
  • Being healthy makes it easier to enjoy life with your family and friends.

Do you think it’s time to take the first step?

*The results are based on research conducted by ACA Research with a sample of 1,024 Australians aged 25 or older. Fieldwork was conducted between the 1st and 8th of April 2015, with quotas set on age, gender and location based on population estimates sourced from the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Recommended reading - How-to guides

Guides

How-to make a black rice and kale salad

This is one salad that’s anything but boring!

Read more
Recipes

How-to make a raspberry flax smoothie

It’s fresh, fruity and packed full of goodness.

Read more
Guides

How-to make nori rolls with veggies

Bring some Japanese flair to the kitchen with these vegetable nori rolls, packed full of flavour.

Read more
Lifestyle

How-to pack a picnic

Here's a simple way to load your picnic basket with nutritious and tasty food.

Read more
Community

Healthy tech and gadgets Pt. 4

Fire up your health and fitness with the latest tech gear.

Read more
Lifestyle

9 exercise excuses – and how to beat them

For every excuse, there are a million reasons. Here's how to overcome your reluctance.

Read more
Lifestyle

5 hacks for mastering the art of weekly food prep

Here's how to prep your food like a pro – in just an hour at the weekend

Read more
Experts

Building a better brain

Brain fitness is a lifelong commitment to health and wellbeing - Dr Brockis shares her top fit tips.

Read more

For full functionality of this site it is necessary to enable JavaScript. Here are instructions on how to enable JavaScript in your web browser.