Following on from Monday’s challenge for the week, which hopefully you can compare to your earlier attempts at the Demartini written exercise and see if you are making any behavioural changes.

Obesity is one of the main health risk factors in the UK, currently the statistics state that 84% of adults in England were classified as overweight or obese.

More than one-third of men and over 8 in 10 women are overweight or obese.

At the same time, purchases of fruits and vegetables have fallen dramatically in recent years, so this makes it clear that behaviour change is urgently needed.

I said earlier, and we touched on this in week 6, our mental health state can affect our behaviours which can cause a negative impact on our lifestyles. I am certainly more cheerful when I’m eating food that I really enjoy, but then I’m less happy with a salad!  However, I have adjusted my behaviour, and this allows me on occasions to have a little ‘blow out’ the hard part in the early days was to get back on track and keep focussed.

So, one of our behaviour changes will be that we need to purchase healthy foods, next change would be that we will need to prepare these and this is then followed by another behavioural change…. eating it!

This would then move into what they call behavioural diagnosis. This is where we either agree it will be a benefit to our health or we put up barriers to prevent us doing it. For example, why don’t people buy more healthy food? It’s too expensive?  I don’t know where to get it?  or are people not aware of its health benefits?

Therefore, its important within all of these ‘changes’ to assess what you need to help you get through these. You need to identify the most suitable intervention function to target the barriers you put up. For example, if the main barrier to the purchasing of healthy food is a lack of understanding that it’s healthy, then an educational campaign is likely most effective or just research on the Internet. If it’s the cost, then do you prioritise what’s items you introduce to suit your budget.

This is exactly the same way we would look at our behavioural changes with regards to other aspects of our lifestyles, such as physical exercise.

That is what the written exercise is about again this week, a few of you felt this was a real benefit to you last time and that is why I want to do it again this week, this is for your own use, you can share it with me if you wish, some have, some don’t, but it does help you plan how to make these changes and break down your own barriers that usually prevent you from getting the most out of your healthy living regime.