09 January 2019
People keen to turn their new year health goals into reality can get a guiding hand from one of NSW Health’s Get Healthy coaches, all for free.

A team of university qualified Get Healthy coaches - including dietitians and exercise physiologists - provide 10 confidential coaching calls over six months with health goals, and eating and exercise plans individually tailored to client’s needs.

Over the last nine years the coaches have helped over 82,000 people achieve their personal health goals - including establishing healthier eating patterns, getting and staying active, cutting alcohol intake and reducing weight.

“We have had some great results which show that our health coaches are really making a big difference in people’s lives across NSW,” said Dr Jo Mitchell, Executive Director for the Centre of Population Health.

“This is especially the case at the start of the year when people want to make some changes in their lifestyle that are achievable and sustainable for the rest of the year and beyond,” she said.

“The coaches provide motivation and support to set your own healthy lifestyle goals as well as giving information and a journal to help you track your goal and actions.

“Once the program is over, there is also the opportunity to re-enrol for coaching or get six months of SMS based coaching which is also free. It’s a fantastic service for the people of NSW.”

Improved lifestyle outcomes from the coaching program include a 20 per cent increase in participants meeting recommended levels of physical activity, and an average 4.1 cm reduction in participants’ waist circumference across the six months.

Reducing the possibility of diabetes is another upside. “A 2kg weight loss in adults reduces the risk of developing diabetes by 30 per cent,” said Dr Mitchell.

Get Healthy also offers free programs for type 2 diabetes prevention, alcohol reduction, healthy weight gain in pregnancy, and a culturally appropriate program for Aboriginal people.

In 2018-19 NSW Health invested $38 million towards reducing the prevalence of overweight and obesity, of which $3 million is allocated to the Get Healthy service.

To get started with a Get Healthy Coach, call 1300 806 258. For more information, go to: https://www.gethealthynsw.com.au/program/