Australians are generally healthy but have at least one health risk factor that may affect them in the future, according to a new study.
A national report card released by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW) has revealed 85 per cent of people aged 15 and over rate their health as good or better, despite all having at least one risk factor for poor health.
According to AIHW director and chief executive officer David Kalisch, while Australia compares well internationally in terms of high life expectancy and falling levels of smoking, the country still has one of the highest rates of obesity – one in four adults and one in 12 children.
"Many Australians eat too few vegetables, fruit and wholegrain cereals, and eat too many foods high in fat, sugar and salt," he said today (June 21).
"Almost 60 per cent of Australians over 15 don’t do enough physical activity to benefit their health."
Australians wishing to learn more about ways to improve their lifestyle may benefit from the rebates and wellbeing programs offered by private health insurance providers.
Australia spent $121.4 billion on health in 2009-10 and accounted for 9.4 per cent of total spending on all goods and services in the local economy, according to the AIWH data.