Heart health figures pain worrying picture for the Valley
NEW data on heart health has been released by the Australian Heart Foundation, with figures revealing the Clarence Valley is not quite a picture of health.
According to the Heart Foundation's Australian Heart Maps, 70.5 per cent of residents in the Coffs Harbour-Grafton region are not physically active enough for good health and about 36 per cent are obese.
The Clarence Valley has a rate of physical inactivity of 72 per cent, significantly higher than the national average of 66per cent.
Smoking is also more prevalent, with 21 per cent of the Valley's population currently smoking, compared to the national average of 16 per cent.
The prevalence of obesity in the Clarence Valley (39 per cent) is also significantly higher than the national average of 28 per cent.
With heart disease continuing to be the single leading cause of death in Australia, according to new Australian Bureau of Statistics data released this week, the Heart Foundation is urging people in the Clarence Valley to join the fight against heart disease and improve their own health.
The foundation is encouraging people to sign up for its MyMarathon challenge that runs throughout this month.
Heart Foundation director of active living Trevor Shilton said you don't need to be an elite athlete to conquer the MyMarathon challenge.
"Just about anyone can get involved, no matter what your age, location, background or fitness level. You decide the pace and you decide the place,” Professor Shilton said.
"You can do it in four hours, four days or four weeks; you can do it on your own or part of a team; you can walk, run, wheel or shuffle; you can do it anywhere you like - it's a very flexible way to complete a marathon.
"In addition to ticking 'do a marathon' off your bucket list, your heart will thank you for taking part.
Regular physical activity helps to keep your heart strong and healthy, while also contributing to your broader physical and mental health.”
MyMarathon allows participants to conquer a marathon at their own pace and in any place, while also raising money to tackle heart disease.
Participants will have the entire month of October 2019 to run, jog, walk, cycle or wheel the distance of a marathon (42.2km).
This is about 1.4km a day and the distance can be built up at any time of the day or night that is convenient.
To help the Heart Foundation achieve its goal of a world where people don't suffer or die because of heart disease, MyMarathon participants are encouraged to ask family, friends and colleagues to sponsor their efforts.