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Queenslanders getting some Straight Answers

Figures released by Queensland Health today show just how hard it is for people trying to get straight answers on healthy living.

The research, undertaken ahead of the development of a new health campaign called Straight Answers showed a lack of self-awareness when it came to healthy living.

While 82 per cent of people with a healthy weight thought they had a healthy lifestyle, more than three quarters of overweight (76 per cent) people, and half (51 per cent) of all obese people said they also had a healthy lifestyle.

Queensland Health Director of Marketing and Communications Phillip Stork said although these figures were concerning, Queenslanders were slowly becoming more aware about what they could and should do to improve their health.

"In a 2014 Queensland health survey 67 per cent of Queenslanders told us that in the past 12 months, they had taken action to either maintain their current weight or lose weight," Mr Stork said.

"There is also more good news in the latest National Health Survey which has shown a plateauing of obesity in both Queensland and across the nation.

"Although this is very welcome news, there are still two-thirds of adults who are overweight or obese so there is much more work to be done."

Mr Stork said the abundance of often conflicting information about diet and exercise was causing confusion and making it difficult for some people to understand and act on health messages.

"We've had to call in our best health myth busters to begin combatting some of the unreliable information online," he said.

"The first myth we've set out to bust is that living a healthy lifestyle is hard.

"The part that's actually hard is accessing quality information."

Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital Dietitian Hilary Jimmieson said Queensland Health's Healthier.Happier. website had begun sorting fact from fiction thanks to the new Straight Answers campaign.

"There are some really great resources available on the web but unfortunately others can be simply misleading," Ms Jimmieson said.

"When we're told to stop eating sugar, that running will damage our knees or that the latest fad diet is best it's hard to know where to begin.

"And this is why Straight Answers will help people sort fact from fiction."

Ms Jimmieson said Queenslanders could use the Healthier.Happier. website to work out what they do know, what they don't know and what they should know. The website also includes healthy recipes and fitness videos to help make healthy lifestyle changes easier.

"We know that some of these myths will be quite well known," Ms Jimmieson said.

"For some people this campaign may prompt a change in their lifestyle and for others we hope it reinforces that they're doing a great job with their eating and exercise and to keep those healthy habits going."

Some of the questions answered by the Straight Answers campaign include:

1. How long do you have to walk to burn off a serve of chips?

2. How many teaspoons of sugar are in a sports drink?

3. Will physical activity really reduce stress?

Find out 'what you know, what you don't know, and what you should know' about nutrition, physical activity, weight and lifestyle by visiting www.healthier.qld.gov.au

Last updated: 4 July 2016