Healthy lifestyles undermined by indulgence

PUBLISHED: 12:45 28 March 2008 | UPDATED: 13:08 06 May 2010

AFFLUENT locals may be diligent when it comes to exercise and steering clear of cigarettes, but according to a new report they are unwittingly risking their health with their love of the finer things in life. This group of well-paid professionals have bee

AFFLUENT locals may be diligent when it comes to exercise and steering clear of cigarettes, but according to a new report they are unwittingly risking their health with their love of the finer things in life.

This group of well-paid professionals have been dubbed the "New Indulgents" and while they typically exercise more than average, they also drink a lot and frequently dine out on high-calorie cuisine.

Market information analysts CACI came up with the findings after assessing data from all UK local authorities which showed that affluent areas in London and the south East have the highest populations of New Indulgents.

St Albans came ninth on the list with 30.8 per cent of the district's adult population fitting this category - compared to a national average of 8.2 per cent.

The most indulgent area was Chiltern in Buckinghamshire with 43.5 per cent.

CACI claim New Indulgents drink 59 per cent more wine and spend nearly twice as much on wine for drinking in the home, than the average person.

They also drink slightly more beer but eat above average amounts of fresh fish and vegetables and tend not to eat fast food.

Ian Thurman, head of location planning at CACU, said: "We often associate ill health with smoking, eating too much fast food and being relatively poor.

"Our findings show that a substantial section of the population do none of these things -- they typically don't smoke or eat fast food and are affluent - but their food and alcohol consumption are still putting their future health at risk despite good levels of exercise."

He added: "These findings will prove useful for health organisations in understanding potential future health problems. They also act as a wake-up call for those who like the finer things in life - the New Indulgents are not as healthy as they might think.

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