The National Programme „Healthy Living“

Health and Education, Health and Physical Activity, Health and Nutrition, Health and Workplace, Health and the Environment

Decreased quality of life, most often lasting through the entire life, disability, early mortality and high expenses for the health system are the main characteristics of chronic non-communicable diseases which in developed countries of the world but also in the Republic of Croatia make up about a quarter of morbidity and mortality. A significant increase in morbidity and mortality in the last few decades is a consequence of natural population change, resulting in an increased share of older persons in the total population, insufficient physical activity as a result of a sedentary way of life or work, or of too high a workload, exposure to stress and habits harmful to one’s health.

The implementation of the National Programme “Healthy Living” started back in 2003 under the supervision of the Ministry of Health and the Croatian Institute of Public Health. The Ministry of Health and the Croatian Institute of Public Health have in 2014 organized the continuation of the implementation of this programme which, by acting in the community, informs, educates and raises awareness among the citizens of the Republic of Croatia of all ages of positive aspects of healthy lifestyles – healthy nutrition, physical activity, obesity prevention, decreasing overweight and morbidity from chronic non-communicable (cardiovascular diseases, tumours, type 2 diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, mental illness). Intersectorial bodies, government authorities and other institutions also take part in the implementation of this National Programme.

The programmes and activities of the National Programme “Healthy Living” are focused on the improvement of health of the entire population; acting on the local community level, they inform, educate and raise awareness among citizens of all ages of the positive aspects of healthy lifestyles. The five components of this programme that include various projects are: Health Education (Physical health: the project Polygons, 10-minute exercises, Recommended menus for elementary schools and high schools, Mental health, Sexual and reproductive health), Health and Physical Activity, Health and Nutrition, Health and Workplace, Health and the Environment. The target populations of the National Programme are: children and youth, persons of middle and older age, generally – persons with increased behavioral and biomedical risk factors.

The expected public health contributions of this National Programme are: raising citizens’ awareness of the need for maintaining their health, modifying changeable unhealthy habits, decreasing morbidity from chronic mass diseases and increasing the share of healthy citizens in total population of the Republic of Croatia.

Download Healthy Living: Food criteria

Manual: Polygon for Physical Activity of School Children