Today’s Poll

B.C. families eating their greens

By Contributor
June 22nd, 2012

British Columbia’s families are leading the country when it comes to healthy lifestyles, according to Statistics Canada’s Canadian Community Health Survey for 2011, releasedn this week.

Each year, Statistics Canada releases the report card on self-reported health indicators, health status and health system use. In keeping with recent years, B.C. ranks at or near the top on most indicators measured.

For example:

  • British Columbian adults have the lowest rates of self-reported obesity or overweight in the country, at 46.6 per cent. The rate is significantly lower for British Columbian women (37.5 per cent) than men (55.7 per cent).
  • Physical activity rates for those 12 and older are the highest among the provinces, at 59.6 per cent.
  • Smoking rates here in B.C. are also the lowest in the country, at 15.8 per cent.
  • British Columbian families rank third among all Canadian jurisdictions in fruit and vegetable consumption, with 40.7 per cent of those 12 and older consuming fruit or vegetables five or more times per day. Women (45.2 per cent) were more frequent consumers than men (36.1 per cent).
  • British Columbia continues to increase its ranking of self-perceived health for those over 12 years of age, moving from fourth to second in the country (along with Newfoundland and Labrador) with 60.9 per cent of respondents reporting very good to excellent overall health.

Despite the positive results, there remains room for improvement. The government of B.C. is committed to supporting healthy lifestyles for all British Columbian families, and reducing rates of chronic disease. On May 10, 2012, British Columbia announced the formalization of the first provincial partnership with the national, non-profit organization ParticipACTION to further promote healthy living and physical activity.

The partnership supports Healthy Families BC, a public-health strategy launched in May 2011 that addresses chronic disease – such as diabetes, heart disease and cancer – and obesity prevention among British Columbian families and communities with a focus on healthy eating and physical activity.

The Canadian Community Health Survey has been providing population-level information on health determinants, health status and health system use for ten years.

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