World Heart Day: small steps towards a healthy lifestyle

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Brussels 29 September – Today, World Heart Day provides an important reminder about some simple lifestyle adjustments people can make that can help them lead healthier lives.

Heart disease kills more than two million people in Europe each year; more than all cancers combined. It also puts a massive strain on the European economy, costing taxpayers almost 196 billion euros a year. People can choose to take small steps towards a balanced lifestyle and help prevent heart disease. Diet and an active lifestyle is one way people can get and stay healthy. To compliment this, using low calorie sweeteners people can enjoy sweet taste, without worrying about calorie intake.

Worryingly, the number of obese or overweight young people is increasing, particularly in Southern Europe. In Italy for example, research revealed that nearly 40% of nine-year-old boys are overweight.1 This strongly correlates with increased risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes.

Giving consumers the choice of a wide range of great tasting low calorie foods, low calorie sweeteners can help to empower people to take better control of their diets and calorie intakes. The International Sweeteners Association (ISA) believes that people who want to win the maximum long-term health benefits from exercise and a balanced diet can enhance their lifestyle by using low calorie sweeteners.

‘The solution is an innovative approach of using small and sustainable changes to our diet and physical activity patterns. When these changes are made part of our everyday lives, we benefit without feeling deprived.’ According to Professor Hill, evidence from the US National Registry of Weight Control shows that most people who maintain long-term weight loss adopt this approach.2

On the occasion of the World Heart Day, the ISA welcomes all efforts to raise awareness of the debilitating realities of heart disease and to raise awareness of the choices available to reduce the impact of unhealthy lifestyles.

By providing sweetness without calories, low calorie sweeteners can make a useful contribution to a healthy, calorie-controlled diet.