Liverpudlians Fail their Health Test
Liverpool are so saturated with health messages that they no longer
know what is good for them. A survey by Yakult has revealed people
still are unsure how much exercise they should be undertaking and
how much salt, water, dairy and calories they should be consuming
per day as part of a healthy balanced lifestyle.
When asked how much exercise they should be undertaking, 84% did not
know that ’30 minutes of moderate intense activity 5 times a week’
was the recommended guideline amount. This is despite
government campaigns for people to include exercise as part of their
daily routine as physical activity is key to reducing the risks of
cancer, heart disease and obesity.
especially in light of the current obesity epidemic, is the fact
that 20% of men thought their daily calorie intake should be 4500
calories or more, nearly double the official guideline of 2500
Despite increased awareness over salt levels in our food, 79% did
not know that 6 grams of salt was the maximum recommended daily
intake – the 3rd highest in the country. The nation is encouraged to
limit salt intake in effort to reduce the risks of high blood
pressure which in turn can lead to strokes and heart attacks – 2 of
the most common causes of death and illness in the world.
Nutritionist Fiona Hunter says:- "People are bombarded with
health messages from a variety of different sources – from friends,
family and the media through to food manufactures and retailers so
I’m not surprised people are often confused. It's important
that people remember that nutrition is an evolving science and as
such we are constantly fine-tuning the message.
this, the advice on what we need to eat to stay healthy has changed
very little over the last two last decades. The advice is still to
enjoy a wide variety of foods, eat at least five portions of fruit
and/or vegetables day along with modest amounts of fat, salt and
sugar and to take regular exercise and keep weight within the ideal
In addition to confusion over exercise and calories, many people
also don’t seem to know about the importance of keeping hydrated.
Water is the most important nutrient of life and not having the
right level of fluids affects the way the body operates on a daily
However, it seems
that this message is still to get through to many of the population,
as 42% of people did not know that 6-8 glasses of fluids per day is
the recommended intake. However, while dairy products provide an
essential source of calcium protein and other nutrients, sadly 81%
of people did not know they should be eating 3 portions of dairy per
Nutritionist Fiona Hunter continues:- "Good health is like a
jigsaw puzzle in that there are many different elements that
contribute to the big picture. A healthy diet and regular exercise
are very important pieces of the jigsaw and the good news is that
making small changes to your diet and lifestyle can make a real
difference to your health."
Fiona Hunter’s top nutrition and health tips
1) Keep your diet varied. A balanced diet is the easiest way to keep
our digestive systems – and our whole bodies – in good shape. Aim to
eat plenty of fruit, vegetables and starchy, fibre-rich foods – and
cut down on fatty, sugary and salty foods.
2) Get enough calcium. Calcium intake is key throughout life and we
should aim to have 700-800g a day. You can easily meet this by
having a mug of milk (or the equivalent amount on your cereal), a
pot of yoghurt and a matchbox size piece of cheese.
3) Keep hydrated. Over half of our body is made of water so it’s
unsurprising that we need to keep our fluid levels topped up. Try
not to have too many drinks with caffeine but look to have 6-8
glasses a day.
4) Eat plenty of fibre. We need about 18g of fibre a day and the
best sources are wholegrain cereals, pasta and bread.
5) Exercise is not just good for fitness, it helps digestion. Aim
for 30 minutes, 5 times a week. But you don’t just need to be in the
gym – gardening, walking the dog and even rigorous housework can add
to your weekly session count.
6) Take a daily probiotic. This should be seen less as a quick fix
solution and more as a long term health investment to help maintain
your gut health while supporting your body’s natural defences.
7) Think about food storage – eating the right food will not be
enough if its not stored or prepared properly. Keep fridges at
temperatures under 5ºC and make sure you cook food thoroughly at a
minimum of 70ºC to kill any bacteria present.
8) Watch your weight – over 75% of people aged over 50 are heavier
than they should be. Obesity can lead to high blood pressure and
heart disease as well as a number of other serious health problems.
9) Look at labels. All products have to show nutritional information
on their packaging so if you are in doubt – check it out. If you’re
unsure then try the FSA’s Eat Well site –
million investment in Croxteth schools
MORE than £25
million is set to be invested creating 2 state-of-the-art schools in
Croxteth. Under the plans which will go before the city
council’s Executive Board, high performing St John Bosco Arts
College for Girls will be refurbished and formally opened up to
non-Catholic girls from the local community.
In addition, the city council is to seek permission to establish a
new build Catholic Academy for boys on the site of De La Salle
School, which will also be open to non-Catholic boys. It is
also being proposed that Croxteth Community Comprehensive School -
where 1 in 3 desks are empty because of surplus places and 66% of
pupils do not get 5 good GCSE’s - will close by 2010. The number of
pupils entering year 7 at the school has more than halved over the
last 5 years, down from 135 in 2003 to just 57 last month.
Parents who want their children to attend a community school will be
offered a place at nearby Fazakerley High School. The council is to
set up a free dedicated bus service so that students displaced from Croxteth Community Comprehensive School can travel the one mile to
the school without difficulty.
The council’s executive member for education, Councillor Keith
Turner, said:- "It is clear from current projections that the
Croxteth area can no longer sustain 3 secondary schools.
Falling school rolls dictate that we can’t spend tens of millions of
pounds on new schools which all the evidence shows will be virtually
empty in a few years. I strongly believe that this solution
meets the needs of young people in Croxteth and the wider community
by investing in successful schools in the area and giving parents
the option of sending their children to a nearby community school.
I know that parents and pupils at Croxteth Community Comprehensive
School will be disappointed, but the school just has far too many
surplus places and that situation is not going to improve. Our
proposals focus on retaining the two most successful schools in the
area while maintaining community education provision. By
building on the strengths of St John Bosco Catholic School and
creating a Catholic academy which will be a flagship for the city,
we will ensure pupils get the massive investment and high quality
education they deserve.”
Should the Academy at De La Salle School not be given the go-ahead
by the Office of the Schools Commissioner, the existing school will
be rebuilt and be opened up to non-Catholic boys.
The new proposals are part of the Building Schools for the Future (BSF)
programme, which is the biggest schools rebuilding scheme ever seen
in Liverpool. It is providing £485 million to rebuild or improve
secondary schools in the city. The work at De La Salle and St
John Bosco will also be completed earlier than initially proposed. The schemes have been brought forward into Wave 2 of BSF rather than
Wave 6, to make sure that the investment goes into the Croxteth area
as soon as possible.
In order to secure the funding from the government, the council has
had to review existing secondary school provision in the city and
convince the government that the schools they are investing in are
viable and sustainable. A key challenge facing not only
Liverpool, but cities across the country, is declining pupil
numbers. Liverpool is losing around 1,000 pupils from the
system each year, and over the next 5 years, the city will face
significant surplus places in secondary schools largely caused by a
declining birth rate.
ROGUE TRADERS COLLECTING SCRAP CARS IN SOUTHPORT
THE number of
abandoned cars on Southport streets has fallen as more cars are
being scrapped illegally for their valuable metal.
Recent statistics from the Local Government Association show the
number of cars reported as abandoned on the streets of Sefton
council area fell from 202 in 2002/3 to 88 in 2006/7 – a drop of
Scrap merchants would have charged £30 to £50 to take away a rusty
banger only a few years ago. Now they will pay owners up to £200
because the price of steel, aluminium and copper found in cars has
risen steeply. The dramatic increase in metal prices, fuelled
by demand from countries like China, has led to a massive increase
in the number of unlicensed operators flouting environmental laws on
the disposal of scrap cars.
The End-of-Life Vehicles Directive, which became UK law in 2003,
requires potential contaminants such as oil, brake fluid, tyres and
airbags to be removed from cars before they are scrapped. Old
cars must be taken to one of 1,200 ATFs licensed by the Environment
Agency. Car owners should be issued with a Certificate of
Destruction to prove that the vehicle has been depolluted, scrapped
lawfully and road tax is no longer due.
But many local illegal dismantlers are undercutting the ATF’s by
collecting cars and disposing of them illegally. With only around
900,000 Certificates of Destruction estimated to be issued this
year, as many as 1.1 million old cars could be unlawfully collected
during 2008. Legitimate companies who have invested in the
depolluting equipment necessary to be registered by the Environment
Agency are being forced out of business by the rogue traders.
Liberal Democrat environment spokesman Chris Davies says the fault
lies with the DVLA who are accused of maintaining a loophole that
allows huge numbers of drivers and vehicle dismantlers to ignore the
anti-pollution rules. Car owners can claim that they have scrapped
the car themselves simply by ticking a box on their vehicle
registration document. Mr Davies claims it is time for a
Government crackdown to put the dodgy dismantlers out of business.
Mr Davies said:- “While it is welcome news that less scrap cars are
littering our streets, this has only been made possible by the
increase in criminals cashing in at the expense of the environment.
Ministers are allowing illegal operators to run rings around them at
the expense of the environment and allowing legitimate businesses to
go to the wall. This law is
good news for the environment, but the entire scheme is undermined if
these people can simply carry on letting oil and brake fluids wash
down the nearest drain."