West Australian workers urged to steer clear of food delivery


Media contact: Jane Simpson, 0438 682 548, jane.simpson@cancerwa.asn.au

Cancer Council WA have developed a new LiveLighter advertisement encouraging workers to steer clear of greasy takeaway ordered from food delivery apps, and to reach for a healthy lunch instead, whether they are working from home during a lockdown or in the office.

There has been a meteoric rise in the number of West Australians ordering food via meal delivery apps over the last few years.

The proportion of West Australians using food delivery services has risen from 35% in the first quarter of 2019 to 43% in the first quarter of 2021.1

In 2020 the four biggest food delivery services in Australia spent half a million dollars more on advertising than in 2019 (from $3 to 3.5 million).2

Cancer Council WA’s Obesity Prevention Manager, Ainslie Sartori, said that the proliferation of meal delivery apps has made unhealthy food and drinks more accessible than ever before.

“Fast food is loaded with sugar, salt, saturated and trans fats, while being low in fruit, vegies, fibre and wholegrains. It also tends to come in much bigger servings than we need,” Ms Sartori said.

“While meal delivery apps may try to emphasise their healthy offerings, we know that the great majority of meals ordered through these services are junk food, with the top meal suggestions often dominated by offerings from fast food chains.

“The new LiveLighter ad links the regular consumption of junk food, particularly fast food purchased via meal delivery apps, to the development of excess body fat, and highlights the increased risk of cancer associated with being above a healthy weight.”

LiveLighter dietitian Gael Myers encourages workers to make their own lunch to save money and help resist the temptation of ordering in unhealthy takeaway when under the pump.

“A sandwich or leftovers, a piece of fruit and a handful of nuts make for the perfect no-nonsense lunch,” Ms Myers said.

“For healthier takeaway lunch options try a roll or wrap made with grainy bread and plenty of salad, pasta in a tomato-based sauce, or a vegie-packed burrito or soup.”

The new LiveLighter workplace hub has lots of great tips and resources to help people to stay healthy and well during the work day. livelighter.com.au/workplaces

The new LiveLighter advertisements will run from Sunday 4 July until September 2021. View the campaign materials here.

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  • LiveLighter is funded by the WA Department of Health and delivered by Cancer Council WA.
  • More information is available via the website www.livelighter.com.au about how to make small lifestyle changes to improve people’s health.
  • It is estimated that in Australia in 2010, almost 4,000 cancers cases were attributed to being above a healthy weight.3
  • In Western Australia in 2015, 7.8% of the total cancer burden was attributed to being above a healthy body weight, the second leading preventable risk factor for cancer behind tobacco use.4
  • The number of cancer cases attributed to being above a healthy weight is likely to grow over time as obesity rates continue to increase.5

To the editor: No “headless fatties” please

Being overweight comes with a lot of health issues. Some of these are related to the stigma that is attached to being above a healthy weight. We urge you to use images that are respectful, inclusive, and non-stigmatising when reporting on issues related to body weight. For example, show people who are above a healthy weight participating in everyday activities that are not related to weight gain, and use images that include their faces. We are happy to provide you with suitable images if required.

1 Roy Morgan 2021
2 Landsberry & James 2021
3 Whiteman 2015
4 WA Department of Health 2020
5 Pearson-Stuttard 2018