A new report, released on Thursday by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare showed that relatively small changes—such as losing as little as 3 kilograms or maintaining our weight—could have a significant effect in reducing the health impact of overweight or obesity in Australia.

The report, Impact of overweight and obesity as a risk factor for chronic conditions: Australian Burden of Disease Study, shows that if all Australians at risk of disease due to overweight or obesity reduced their body mass index (BMI) by just one point—equating to around 3 kilograms for a person of average height—the overall health impact of obesity would drop substantially.

‘Our weight is our second biggest risk factor in terms of the health ‘burden’, accounting for 7%,’ said AIHW spokesperson Dr Lynelle Moon.

This is behind only tobacco, which accounts for 9% of the burden—though this gap has closed in recent years, as the burden of tobacco drops, and the burden of obesity rises.

Physiotherapists, as experts in movement, anatomy, biomechanics and health, are well placed to have a positive influence in this space.  They are able to encourage patients to lead healthy and active lifestyles incorporating exercise into their daily routine.

At Impact Physiotherapy, our physiotherapists can design programs consisting of strengthening, stretching and aerobic exercises for people who want a well-balanced program to promote their general health and fitness. For those training for specific events, our knowledge of sports and muscle adaptation means we can guide you through a specific training schedule such as preparing for a certain sport, a fun run or marathon.

If you are keen to begin exercising or you need exercise to help with recovery from an injury, come and see us for an assessment and individual program design. We will write an individual exercise program designed to suit your body, your condition and your lifestyle.

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