60% of adults under the age of 25 have said that they feel they have an unhealthy relationship with food. Overall, across all age groups, nearly 50% of those asked said they felt that they were unhappy with their eating habits.
64% of of men who took part in the report said that they have a healthy relationship with food compared to women where 49% said the same. 43% of 18-24 year olds felt that they were happy with their eating regimes.
Three quarters of the population have tried diets!
Worryingly, the results show that less than a fifth of Brits felt comfortable enough in their own body that they didn’t need to consider going on a diet. A staggering 77% said that they had tried to lose weight via some form of diet.
Matron at Benenden Health, Cheryl Lythgoe, said: “It is no great surprise to find that so many individuals in the UK have an unhealthy relationship with food. From a young age – especially for more recent generations – we are surrounded by conversations about body image, diets and comparisons with others, which can challenge our perception of what is normal or desirable.
“Whether you are trying to lose weight or not, the best way to approach your diet is simply to ensure you are getting a good balance of food groups, vitamins and minerals and a good tip is to aim for a rainbow of colours on your plate.
“There is nothing wrong with losing weight if it is necessary for health reasons but dedicated diets and slimming programmes are often unsustainable and ultimately unnecessary in improving our health, not to mention the impact they can have on our wallets.
The impact on our mental well being
Lythgoe continued, “The challenge and burden of constantly assessing our eating habits can also have a significant impact on our mental wellbeing with calorie counting often making us feel worse. Instead, remove these targets and look at making some simple lifestyle changes – whilst enjoying treats in moderation – enabling you to maintain a healthy weight and promote positive wellbeing.”
The worrying set of statistics comes from Benenden Health, a not for profit private healthcare company who carried out research with over 1007 adults in October 2021.