Change4Life has just launched a food voucher scheme to help encourage families to buy healthy food and do more exercise.
The scheme involves money off vouchers for healthy food, healthy eating advice and discounts on a range of activities for all the family.
The funding is coming from the food and fitness industries and not the tax payer. It is the first major step in making people and business more socially responsible for health and fitness.
Great Swapathon website
The scheme is run though a website that has been set up by Change4Life specifically to manage the vouchers called the Great Swapathon website (although at the time of writing the website is temporarily offline).
To get started you will have to fill in a questionnaire which will ask a few simple questions. The questionnaire is for families with children from 2 to 16 years old. If you have children under that age of 2 there is a separate site called Start4Life that is hosted on the NHS main website.
“I started encouraging Jake to drink more water by telling him it was magic drink that will make him super strong and it really worked.” example of how a simple swap can work.
Once completed the site will give you your best six “swaps”. This means that they will advice which foods and activities to swap, for example, swap white bread for wholemeal, swap chips for baked potatoes and swap watching television for a walk in the park.
“It was surprisingly easy to change the kids drinks to sugar free alternatives, they didn’t even notice.” – another simple swap to get kids healthy.
Once signed up you will have a personal profile where you can record your swaps for the whole family. It is a simple system, but that is what makes it so good. Most people only need to make a few small changes to their diet and activity levels to start living a healthy life, and many small changes are often easier to implement and maintain over time than trying to make a few big changes.