Healthy weight: physical activity and healthy eating in adults

Being overweight or obese can lead to many health problems including diabetes, cardiovascular disease and even some cancers.

The council wants to support you to achieve a healthy weight, which could help reduce your risk of a serious illness.

You can find more information on losing weight on the NHS website

Community weight management service

You may be able to get support to achieve a healthy weight from our adult weight management service.


This service is for residents or those registered with a Tower Hamlets GP, or people who work or study within Tower Hamlets. You must:

  • have a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more
  • or have a BMI of 27.5 if you are South Asian

You can find your BMI using the BMI calculator.

Weight Action Programme by Queen Mary University of London

Weight Action Programme is a free 12-week in-person or online (via Zoom) programme run by specialists from the Health and Lifestyle Research Unit, Queen Mary University of London.

The programme helped over 40 per cent of participants to lose at least 5 per cent of their body weight at one year.

Here is some information to help you to decide whether the course is for you. There are several good ways of managing one’s weight. Unfortunately, none of them works for everybody. Fortunately, there is a way to try several of them to see which one works for you.

  • Over the first eight weeks of the course, participants are given a series of tasks. They practice each task for at least the following week
  • If the method worked, they continue to use it; if it did not work or was too difficult, they can abandon it
  • This provides a good chance of finding at least some routines that can be adopted long-term. The tasks are then practiced for another four weeks under supervision
  • Participants work on their tasks with ‘buddies’ and report to their group on both their successes and their failures
  • If you join the course, you will have to commit to adhering to each of the tasks for at least one week. In addition, throughout the course, there is a gradually increasing exercise target, tailored to your needs and capacity.

Contact Weight Action Programme

To register for the course, please complete WAP eligibility questionnaire or text 07860 040 277 if you have any questions. 

For healthcare professionals wishing to refer patients, please complete the form on EMIS ‘‘Weight Action Programme Referral form’ and send it to

Specialist programmes

Eat Well and Move Weight Management Service for adults with physical disabilities

This specialist weight management service is a free exercise and nutrition programme run by Ability Bow.

The programme is suitable for Tower Hamlets residents (or those registered with a Tower Hamlets GP, or people who work or study within Tower Hamlets), aged 18 and older, who are overweight or living with obesity and living with a physical disability.

#Through a 12-week programme of focused one-to-one and small group exercise and nutrition sessions, you will be able to:

  • increase your physical activity levels with support from our expert instructors
  • work with a dietician to identify ways to eat healthily and to manage your weight.

You can choose your sessions to be provided in-person or remotely, or a combination of both.

Our specialist, qualified and experienced team will help you to set achievable goals and lose weight. We will also advise you on ways to sustain your weight loss beyond the programme.

Sessions will be run in different areas of Tower Hamlets including Ability Bow Gym, and online.

How to sign up

If you have any questions about joining the programme, please contact or call 020 8980 7778.

For health professionals wishing to refer patients, complete the form on EMIS ‘‘Disability Weight Management Tier 2 Ability Bow’ and send it to or call 020 8980 7778.


Shape Up Weight Management Service for adults with learning disabilities

The Community Learning Disability Service and Create are running a Tier 2 weight management programme to support adults with learning disabilities within Tower Hamlets to lose weight and to develop healthier, more active lifestyles.   

Participants, and their carers or support workers will be supported to develop personalised timetables and identify weekly goals.

We expect participants to attend all sessions and complete ‘homework’ tasks (healthy eating, exercise) and to be supported to do this by their support network (family and paid support).

We offer weekly or fortnightly fitness and information sessions over a minimum of 12 weeks as well as one-on-one input from health and lifestyle professionals working within the Community Learning Disability Service. We encourage people to join group sessions but also offer home visits as needed.   

How to sign up

If you want to know more about this exciting new programme, please contact the Community Learning Disability Service on 0207 771 5500 or email

For health professionals wishing to refer patients, please complete the form on EMIS “Learning Disability Weight Management Tier 2 CLDS’ and send it to

Are there any other ways for me to get more active?

Sports and physical activity

The council offers a range of activities that people can get involved in, including  specific activities for people over 50 and women only.

Adults over 50

The Young@Heart programme offers a range of activities at leisure centres across the borough.


These sessions give women and girls the choice of 12 single-sex swimming sessions which take place every week.

Healthy Families Programme

This programme supports families and vulnerable groups to make it easier for them to lead a healthy life. The programme helps people to make healthier food choices, enjoy a more active lifestyle, develop self-confidence and maintain emotional and mental wellbeing.   


Parents, carers and families with children aged from 0 to 11 years and children with special needs or disabilities (all ages).

Please contact Denise De-Goze to find out more

Tel: 0207 364 0971


Community navigators

Community Navigators are on-site at Idea Stores Chrisp Street, Watney Market and Whitechapel to provide support and information on health and wellbeing as well as finances, employment, education, housing and social activities. They can help you to identify your needs, set goals and find the right service.

Outdoor gyms

There are urban outdoor gyms in parks across Tower Hamlets that people can use to get active and improve their fitness. The free and easily accessed gyms can incude parallel bars, cross trainers, smart energy hand bikes, benches and sprint tracks.

The gyms are based at the following locations:

  • Millwall Park, Manchester Road, E14
  • Ropewalk Gardens, E1
  • Shandy Park, Harford Street, E1
  • Sir John McDougall Gardens, Westferry Road, E14
  • Rounton Road Park, Rounton Road, E3
  • Jolly's Green, Joshua Street, E14
  • Pollard Square, Pollard Row E2