On the agenda: Sedentary lifestyle raises obesity risk

Two out of three people in Britain are off their feet, either seated or lying down, for more than 20 hours a day, leading to an increase in obesity, according to a WeightWatchers study.

WeightWatchers: Move More campaign
WeightWatchers: Move More campaign

In more detail 

WeightWatchers commissioned a poll as part of its Move More campaign, to demonstrate why people confuse physical exertion with mental exhaustion and how this can lead to obesity. The poll found that 83 per cent of 18- to 24-year-olds checked their mobile phones in bed at night and 71 per cent did so again in the morning.

WeightWatchers said nearly half of respondents felt ‘obliged’ to respond to their work emails outside of office hours, creating delusions of  ‘being busy’ and ‘on the go’. WeightWatchers claimed the confusion between mental tiredness and physical exertion was ‘massively fuelling the obesity epidemic’. The Move More campaign aims to increase the overall activity in people’s everyday lifestyles by suggesting fun ways for people to be less sedentary.

PR strategy

WeightWatchers worked with Professor Stuart Biddle, professor of physical activity and health at Loughborough University, to create the press release detailing the results of the survey, which included his quotes, and sent it widely to health and news journalists. 

Media coverage

News pieces appeared in the Metro, Daily Star, The Daily Telegraph and Daily Mail, supported by online news pieces and regional press, in addition to national and local radio including the BBC.

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