30 November 2020

Revealed: The differing attitudes towards weighing habits

60% of young adults in Ireland don’t weigh themselves

4 min read

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A new survey from leading protection specialist Royal London has shed light on the level of importance people in Ireland place on weighing themselves. The nationwide survey of 1,000 adults, which was carried out before the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent restrictions, asked ‘How often do you weigh yourself?’.

Royal London Survey reveals:

  • 60% of respondents aged 18 – 24 years old say they never weigh themselves, compared to 29% of those aged 45 – 54.
  • 25% of 18 – 24-year-olds say they never weigh themselves, preferring instead to rely on ‘how they feel’; 35% of respondents in this age group said they never weigh themselves as they ‘just don’t think of it’.
  • 37% of women say they never weigh themselves, compared to 31% of men.
  • 9% of women say they weigh themselves every day, compared to 5% of men.

 

Speaking about the Royal London survey, Colette Houton, Underwriting and Claims Lead in Royal London said,

"The weighing scales can be used as a supportive tool to monitor progress, increase accountability and easily track results in a tangible way. While it is just one way to see the impact of your lifestyle choices, and there are lots of other contributing factors to overall health, the figure on the scales can be a helpful indicator. But whether or not you choose to weigh yourself regularly, if at all, and the importance you put on the result is quite personal. So, it’s interesting to see from our survey findings the varying attitudes towards weighing yourself amongst young and old, men and women, throughout the country.”

 

Highlights from Royal London survey included:

  • Overall, 33% of adults in Ireland never weigh themselves – 21% say they just don’t think of it and 12% don’t think it’s a good idea to do so.
  • Almost one quarter (24%) of respondents say they weigh themselves just a few times a year, and 22% say they do so on a weekly basis.
  • 7% of people weigh themselves every day.
  • The younger generation are much less likely to weigh themselves – 60% of 18 – 24-year olds, compared with just 26% of those aged 55 and over.
  • Those aged 55 and over are most likely to weigh themselves every day (9%) followed by those in the 35 – 44 age bracket (8%).
  • People in Munster are least likely to weigh themselves – 43% compared with 20% of those in Connacht/Ulster; people in Munster are also the least likely group to weigh themselves every day (4%).

 

Ms Houton commented,

“Age definitely appears to be an influencing factor when it comes to how often people weigh themselves, and interestingly, it’s the younger generation who are most likely to view weighing themselves as unnecessary: 25% of 18-25-year-olds say they never weigh themselves, preferring instead to rely on ‘how they feel’.”

“When it comes to gender, the survey results show that men, on the whole, are more interested in the scales than women: 37% of women say they never weigh themselves, compared to 31% of men. Of this, more women (16%) than men (9%) think we should never weigh ourselves.”

“Geographically, people in Munster are least likely to weigh themselves – 43% compared with 20% of those in Connacht/Ulster – and people living in Munster are also the least likely group to weigh themselves every day (4%).”
 

Ms Houton concluded,

“We all know the figure that appears on the weighing scales is not a definitive indicator of health, but it can help us understand the impact of lifestyle on our wellbeing. There’s no ‘one-size-fits all’ approach to maintaining our physical and mental health, and what works for one person may not work for another. However, it’s important to do what we can, where we can, to mind our physical and mental health especially during this challenging time. If someone is looking for more information about the impact of weight and lifestyle on life cover, their Financial Broker will be able to provide guidance based on their individual needs and circumstances.”

 

ENDS

Sources

Please see PDF of press release for topic sources.

About Royal London:

Royal London has a history of protecting our policyholders and their families for over 190 years in Ireland, and we’re committed to continue to do so for a long time to come. Today we are owned by The Royal London Mutual Insurance Society Limited – the largest financial life, pensions, and investments mutual company in the UK, with 4,300 people, providing around 8.6 million policies and more than €164.3 billion in Group funds under management. (Figures as at June 2020).

Royal London’s Irish office is based at 47-49 St Stephen’s Green, Dublin 2.