Health Behaviours

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Nutrition and the cost of eating well

Fruit & vegetable consumption

  • In 2015/16, one in three individuals aged 12 years or older in the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit region reported eating vegetables and fruits five or more times a day (31%), statistically similar to the Ontario percentage (28%).

Last updated: September 05, 2018.

Visit the PHO Snapshots Self-Reported Nutrition and Healthy Weights page for more detail.

Healthy eating among students

  • In the 2014/15 school year about three in every 100 students between grades 7 and 12 in the Health Unit region reported often or always going to bed hungry. This estimate did not vary significantly between regions, or between elementary (grade 7 & 8) and secondary (grades 9 to 12) students.
  • Overall, about 13.1% of students within the Health Unit region reported not eating breakfast in the previous five school days in 2014/15, similar to the percentage in other northern regions (19.2%) and Ontario (16.2%).
  • On an average date, about one in five students in the Health Unit region ate no fruits/vegetables or only one fruit/vegetable, similar to the percentage for other northern regions and Ontario.
  • In 2014/15, about one in ten students in the Health Unit region drank pop or other drinks once each day during the previous seven days, significantly higher compared to the percentages for other northern regions (6%) and Ontario (5%). About one in three students in the Health Unit region drank pop, sports drinks, sweetened tea, or coffee two to four times a week.
More information can be found in the following report: Healthy Eating Among Students in Grades 7 to 12 in the NBPSDHU region (November 2017).

Food skills

  • Food skills are those that are necessary in order to plan, purchase for and prepare safe, nutritious, and culturally-acceptable meals. They impact food choice and eating behaviours and contribute to healthy eating. The Environmental Scan of Food Skills Programming in the District of North Bay report highlights the outcomes from research to understand the programs and resources that are being utilized within North Bay to address food skills development in the community. 

View the Environmental Scan of Food Skills Programming in the District of North Bay (August 2016) here. 

The cost of healthy eating

  • Each year, the Health Unit conducts the Nutritious Food Basket survey at grocery stores across the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit region. The Price of Eating Well Report 2014 shares the findings from the survey and shows that the cost of healthy eating is too high for many people. It also explains how poverty and food insecurity affect health. 

More information can be found in The Price of Eating Well Report 2014 (November 2014)

  • Being able to access healthy food. Transportation challenges. Not enough money to eat healthy. Lack of funding for health programs. These are some of the food related issues Aboriginal people in our district face. In 2011, the Health Unit visited First Nation communities and Aboriginal organizations to talk about food. The Food Matters Report 2012 highlights the themes from our talks and provides ideas for future action.

Read the Food Matters Report 2012 (September 2012) here. 

Physical activity

Self-reported physical activity

  • In 2013/14, most individuals aged 12 years or older in the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit region (57%) were physically active (i.e., expended energy levels 3.0 kcal/kg/day during leisure-time physical activity) or moderately active (i.e., expended energy levels between 1.5 and 2.9 kcal/kg/day during leisure-time physical activity), statistically similar to the Ontario percentage (55%). Physical activity has not changed significantly since 2003 in our region or in Ontario.

Visit the PHO Snapshots Self-Reported Physical Activity page for more detail.

Physical activity among students

  • In 2014/15 about one in four students in the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit region reported being physically active for at least 60 minutes a day during the previous seven days, similar to the percentage for other northern regions and Ontario. This percentage has not changed between 2010/11 and 2014/15 school years in any of the three regions.
  • Almost one of every two students in the Health Unit region reported no physical activity at school (46.4%), similar to the percentage for students in other northern regions (41.2%) and Ontario (41.9%). This percentage has not changed between 2010/11 and 2014/15 school years in the Health Unit region or Ontario, but has decreased by about 10% in other northern regions.
  • About half of all students in the Health Unit region usually travel to school on a school bus, significantly higher compared to students in Ontario where about one in four come to school in a school bus. About one in eight in the Health Unit region travelled to school by walking or bicycling (17.7%), similar to students of other northern regions (14.0%) but significantly lower compared to Ontario students.
  • About a third of students in all three regions spent three to four hours using screens recreationally. About six in ten students in the Health Unit region spent an average of three or more hours on an average using screens recreationally (62.6%), similar compared to students in other northern regions (60.1%) and in Ontario (64.1%).

More information can be found in the following report: Physical Activity Among Students in Grades 7 to 12 in the NBPSDHU region (November 2017).

Sexual behaviour

Youth

  • Almost half (48.5%) of youth (aged 15-19 years) in the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit region report having had sexual intercourse, significantly higher than for Ontario (30.3%). Almost 90 percent responded that they had had sexual intercourse in the past 12 months. Of the youth who indicated that they had had sexual intercourse in the past 12 months, 58.1% reported having had one partner in the past 12 months and 41.9% reported having had two or more different sexual partners during this time frame.

More information can be found in the following report: Sexual Health Behaviour of Youth (15-19 Years of Age) in the NBPSDHU region (May 2015).

Young adults

  • Almost 90% of young adults (aged 20-24 years) in the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit region report having had sexual intercourse, statistically similar to Ontario (76.6%). Of those who indicated that they had had sexual intercourse in the past 12 months, 80.5% reported having had one partner in the past 12 months and 19.5% reported having had two or more different sexual partners during this time frame.

More information can be found in the following report: Sexual Health Behaviour of Young Adults (20-24 Years of Age) in the NBPSDHU region (May 2015).

Weight and obesity

Adults

  • In 2015/16, the combined corrected age-standardized percentage of overweight and obese adults in the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit region was 70%, significantly higher and 8% higher than the Ontario percentage of 62%. The corrected age-standardized percentage of overweight adults in the Health Unit region (38%) was similar to the Ontario percentage (35%), as was the corrected age-standardized percentage of obese adults (Health Unit region: 32%; Ontario: 27%). Self-reported body mass index (BMI) was corrected to better reflect measured BMI.

Last updated: September 05, 2018.

Visit the PHO Snapshots Self-Reported Nutrition and Healthy Weights page for more detail.

Students

  • In 2014/15 about one in four students were overweight or obese in the North Bay Parry Sound District Health Unit region (27.6%), similar to the percentage for other northern regions (28.2%) and Ontario (25.4%). This percentage has not changed between 2010/11 and 2014/15 school years in any of the three regions.
  • About one in five students in the Health Unit region thought they were ‘too fat’ (18.2%), which was similar to students in other northern regions (24.0%) and Ontario (24.3%).
  • About three of every ten students reported trying to lose weight, similar to percentages for students in other northern regions and Ontario. Almost half of the students who identified as Aboriginal in the Health Unit region reported trying to lose weight, significantly higher compared to non-Aboriginal students.

More information can be found in the following report: Healthy Weights Among Students in Grades 7 to 12 in the NBPSDHU region (November 2017).

North Bay
Parry Sound
Burk's Falls

345 Oak Street West

705-474-1400

70 Joseph Street Unit #302

705-746-5801

17 Copeland Street (by appointment only)

1-800-563-2808