Sheffield’s poor need not be poorly

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Education and motivation are the keys to bridging the health divide between Sheffield’s richer and poorer suburbs, many Star readers believe.

It need not cost much to live a healthier lifestyle and avoid problems that lead to early mortality, they argue.

There’s been a big response to the major report by the Sheffield Fairness Commission which found that people living in poorer areas live around a decade less than those in wealthier parts of the city.

It found that those in less well-off suburbs like Darnall and Burngreave were more likely to be affected by health issues such as cardiovascular disease, cancer and obesity.

Dr Jeremy Wight, the city’s director of public health, argued poverty was still the single biggest cause of health inequality in the city.

But Blade for Sale on The Star’s website argues that education and motivation are key factors, not being poor.

“To give yourself a chance of a long life you have to eat well, exercise, not smoke and drink only in moderation,” he said.

“Fruit and veg from the greengrocer is cheaper than junk from the supermarket, while exercise is free.

“The poorer the area, the higher the consumption of tobacco and alcohol. I am sick of this society where everything is blamed on being poor. You can live a healthy life much more cheaply than an unhealthy one,” he adds.

Thorpey said: “Why is this always linked to wealth and not intelligence? Smarter people tend to earn more money. Smarter people tend to realise that eating processed, dehydrated, refined, dehydrogenated, fat-laced junk food is bad for you.”

Comrade Door said such problems of inequality had been well documented for a century.

“What there is in this city is a scandalous education divide which I think you’ll find runs exactly along the line of the poverty line,” he said.

Fact Hunt added: “If you want to live longer change your lifestyle - get educated, work hard, make money and move to a more affluent area.”

But poster Ukip argued: “We have seen the wages and living standards of the majority in the city compressed, while the richest have seen their salaries increase from 60 times the national average to 180 times the national average since the 1990s.

“Inequality is getting worse and this isn’t unexpected.

“The rich are exploiting the poor - the rich take all the money, while the poor do all the work.”

And Yorkshire65 said the ‘anti-poor’ lobby were out in force in response to the report.