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Ending Christmas excess

Getting a "new you" in the new year can be as easy as a walk in the park, ministers say

With many people wanting to get back into shape following the Christmas and New Year period, Scots are being advised that they didn't need to think drastic diets or pricey gyms were the only answer.

Minister for Public Health Shona Robison said:

"Many of us will have been relaxing over the festive season and perhaps eating and drinking more than we would normally.

"The start of a new year is a good opportunity to take a look at your diet and exercise routine, because small changes can have a big impact on your health.

"The Scottish Government is making tackling obesity, particularly among children, a top priority, but we can't achieve this alone - everyone has a part to play.

"If everyone makes one small resolution to improve their lifestyle, we will all be able to enjoy a happier, healthier 2008."

Communities and Sport Minister Stewart Maxwell added:

"It doesn't have to be about joining a gym or going on a crash diet - just eating a bit more healthily or going out for a walk in Scotland's fantastic countryside with your family can make all the difference.

"And even if you're not able to get into the countryside easily, our towns and cities offer plenty of parks, pathways and other open spaces where you can take some gentle - and enjoyable - exercise."

The Scottish Government