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Dr Amir reveals what eyes can reveal about our health

The nation’s health was brought into sharp focus during the coronavirus pandemic. The pressure piled on the NHS remains to this day, making it a critical issue for policymakers.

According to the latest Health Survey for England, forums prescriptions pharmacies 12 million adults in the country are obese – defined as having a body mass index of 30 or above. 

This represents 28 percent of the population, roughly doubled the 14.9 percent of 30 years ago.

In a bid to counter this, the Government on Wednesday announced a £40million two-year pilot programme to give people living with the condition access to the newest breakthrough weight-loss drugs, a move Prime Minister Rishi Sunak described as a “game-changer”.

Some areas, however, are far better at staying healthy than others, new data from the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities reveals – with one standout in particular.

The council home to the lowest proportion of obese adults was found to be Kensington and Chelsea. 

Just 11.6 percent of the population in London’s centre of affluence were critically overweight, according to figures from the OHID – less than half the national average.

This finding chimes with responses to Census 2021. The Royal Borough had the highest percentage of respondents answering they considered themselves to be in “very good health”.

This, in turn, appears to have helped people there outlive almost everyone else in the UK. Life expectancy for women at birth reached a first-placed 87.9 years in 2020, to 84.2 years for men.

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The good health of Kensington and Chelsea’s residents doubtless had a hand in staving off the worst outcomes during the coronavirus pandemic. Just 68 excess deaths were recorded there in the three years between March 2020 and May 2023.

“Our Public Health services offers tailored support to help people lose weight in a healthy way, including a football based weight loos programme and an individually tailored 12 week weight loss programme. 

“There’s also support for children and families to make healthy choices and become more active, through discounted leisure activities for residents, and new beginners cycling and family fun run activities in Little Wormwood Scrubs.”

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Of the ten leanest local authorities in England, six were in London. Next came Lambeth (14.2 percent), Wandsworth (14.4 percent) and Mole Valley in Surrey (14.7).

The fact that these are some of the wealthiest neighbourhoods in the country, is no surprise.

According to the Health Foundation, 31 percent of people on the lowest incomes report “less than good” health. For those on the highest incomes, the figure is 12 percent. The report concludes: “At any level of income, more money correlates positively with health.

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