Wales politics

Health drive urges families to follow Olympics example

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Families will get advice on keep-fit games

Families will be encouraged to follow the example of the Olympics and get active as part of a new anti-obesity campaign in Wales.

Ministers hope around 1,200 hours of summer sports coverage on TV will inspire people to take part in Games4Life.

Recent figures show more than a third of children are overweight.

An activity book includes advice on using household objects to create games.

Despite efforts to tackle childhood obesity, official figures suggest the problem is not going away.

Obesity

The Welsh Health Survey found 19% of children were obese last year and 35% were either overweight or obese.

The figures have barely changed since 2007.

The survey also found fewer than one in three adults did at least 30 minutes of exercise on five or more days a week and 52% did at least an hour a day.

As part of the campaign, families will be able to get action plans designed to help them reach targets on physical activity.

A summer activity book includes 18 cheap or free games that require little or no equipment.

Deputy Chief Medical Officer Jane Wilkinson said: "We all know how important it is to lead a healthy life, but surveys reveal that many adults and children spend much of the day being inactive.

"Getting your heart pumping every day can help prevent heart disease, cancer, stroke and type two diabetes, improve mental health and relieve stress."

Heritage Minister Huw Lewis, who is responsible for increasing participation in sport, said: "We've suggested some really simple games that can be played anywhere at any time, so there should be no obstacle to a fit and healthy life."

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