Fatigue and low motivation are both leading factors as to why people say they don’t lead healthier lifestyles according to a new survey.

A 2023 online poll of 2,086 adults from the United Kingdom by YouGov on behalf of the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF) was published Wednesday. That poll asked people what it was that prevented them from eating healthier and being more physically active.

“Lacking motivation” (38%) and “feeling too tired” (35%) were given as the top reasons why adults in the UK were not making changes to their eating and exercise habits, the poll says.

Adding to this, poll results nearly half (48%) of “younger people” (aged 25 to 34) answered “feeling too tired” as their reason while less than a quarter (23%) of those over the age of 55 said the same.

More women (40%) than men (29%) said that “feeling too tired” was their reason for not changing to a healthier lifestyle, according to the poll.

To counteract the perceived issues people have with attempting or leading healthier lifestyles, the WCRF has launched an 8-week online healthy living plan it calls “Activ8.”

Living in a healthier way, whether that’s cooking from scratch more often, or getting more active can be easier said than done, especially when tiredness and motivation play such an important role,” said Matt Lambert, Health Information and Promotion Manager at World Cancer Research Fund. “It can also be challenging knowing where to start, yet alone motivating ourselves to make changes.”

That’s why, with the help of Activ8, we want to support and empower people on their journey towards being healthier,” Lambert said.

The WCRF says that Activ8 will be running “all year round” and that anyone can join at any time. The online healthy living plan promises “free health resources,” “healthy eating and exercise tips” and “regular recipes” to those who sign up.

Diet, weight and physical activity affect people’s risk of cancer, according to the ECRF, which is why it is advocating for healthier living. The WCRF says “it has strong evidence that having a balanced diet rich in vegetables, fruit, whole grains such as brown rice and wholemeal bread, and pulses like beans and lentils, can reduce the risk of several different cancers.”

WCRF also claims to have evidence that shows being physically active “can help reduce the risk of certain cancers.” Brisk walking, dancing and even doing household chores are listed as examples of physical activity.

Outside of quitting smoking, being “physically active” is “the most important way someone can lower their risk of at least 12 different types of cancer,” according to the WCRF.

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