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Research reveals potentially life-changing legacy from London Olympics

18 July 2013

The feel-good factor around the 2012 Olympics has helped millions of Brits take a step towards a healthier lifestyle, according to new research from comparison site Gocompare.com.

The study of over 2,000 adults reveals that, a year on from the London games, 23% of Brits believe their lifestyle has changed for the better - with millions being inspired to take more exercise, lose weight, drink less or quit smoking.
And the good news is that the change in behaviour could well convert into financial savings in terms of cheaper life insurance and health insurance cover, as well as the money saved on alcohol and cigarettes.    
The research into the Olympic health legacy commissioned by Gocompare.com found that:
-       24% felt that the games had motivated them to take more exercise
-       Nearly a third (31%) said that they had lost weight since the Olympics
-       16% of those surveyed had given up smoking since the Olympics
-       A quarter (25%) of Brits said they are drinking less since the Olympics
Of the 24% that said the games had motivated them to take more exercise, walking more topped the list of activities (54%) followed by working out at the gym more often (24%), running (23%) and cycling (16%).
Jeremy Cryer from Gocompare.com commented, "In addition to the feel good factor, taking more exercise and leading a healthier lifestyle can have a positive impact on your finances. 
"The cost of life insurance, for example, is based not only on the sum insured and length of the policy, but on your age, state of health and lifestyle factors such as diet and exercise.  So, if you smoke or are overweight your premiums will be higher to reflect greater medical risks and shortened life expectancy associated with smoking and obesity.
"However, changing to a healthy lifestyle can have a major impact on the amount you pay for future premiums.  For example, most insurers class people who have stopped smoking or using a nicotine-replacement product for 12 months as non-smokers, making them eligible for cheaper premiums."
Jeremy Cryer concluded, "So, if you have made a significant lifestyle change - like quitting smoking or losing a significant amount of weight - since arranging life insurance, it would be worth shopping around to see if you can get a better deal.   You should also take the opportunity to reassess the amount of cover you need as your sum insured may need to be adjusted, upwards or downwards, to take into account other changes in your life such as increased financial commitments, a house or job move, or the repayment of debts.  But before cancelling any existing cover, it is essential that you make sure that your new policy is up and running." 
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Notes to editors:

On 3rd-4th July 2013, Vision Critical conducted an online survey among 2,025 randomly selected British adults who are Springboard UK panellists. The margin of error-which measures sampling variability-is +/- 2.2%. The results have been statistically weighted according to the most current education, age, gender and regional data to ensure samples representative of the entire adult population of United Kingdom. Discrepancies in or between totals are due to rounding