fb-trackingSkip to main content

NewMe Healthy Lifestyle

Welcome to NewMe, a healthy lifestyles campaign run by Barking and Dagenham council for its residents! Get free local support to achieve and maintain a healthy weight by exercising, eating healthy and stopping smoking.

Join our online programmes

You can easily attend any of our exercise, healthy eating, stopping smoking and play and communication sessions online throughout the week, from the comfort of your own home.

Our online programmes you can take part in:

Healthy Lifestyles Programme - September 2020 (PDF, 605KB)

Sign up to our free programmes

To sign up to our any of our free programmes, please fill out our form below and a member of our team will aim to be in touch with you within five working days.

Sign up to one of our free programmes


Exercises for at home

Jason and Barbara from the Healthy Lifestyle team have put together some great exercise videos that can be done from the comfort of your own home:

Our online programmes you can take part in

Get active

Keeping active during lockdown

No matter how old you are, introducing regular physical activity into your daily life can improve your overall health, ease stress and improve sleep!  The NHS recommends:

  • adults and older people should aim to do at least 150 minutes per week of moderate exercise
  • young people aged between five and 18 should do 60 minutes of physical activity each day
  • children under the age of five should do three hours of activity a day

If you are new to exercising, the NHS choices website has a digital Fitness Studio with some helpful instructor led videos, covering aerobics, strength and resistance, pilates, and yoga.

The NHS website also has a BMI (body mass index) calculator which can help you find out if you're a healthy weight.  You can also use it to check your child's BMI.

Don't forget to always consult your GP or healthcare professional before beginning any exercise or diet programme.


One You Active 10

Active 10 is a free app you can download that will help you to make small lifestyle changes that you can incorporate into your daily life. Incorporating a ten-minute brisk walk, or more, into daily life is just one example of a small change that can have a big impact, particularly for those that struggle to fit any physical activity or exercise into their daily life.

Download the Active 10 app to set your own goals and get tips on how to incorporate 10 minute bursts of brisk walking into your day.


Exercise on Referral

Our Exercise on Referral programme is for people aged 18 and over, living in Barking and Dagenham and who have one of the following conditions:

  • cancer
  • chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (a group of lung diseases)
  • diabetes type I or II controlled
  • hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol)
  • hypertension
  • mild to moderate depression
  • osteoporosis
  • rheumatoid arthritis
  • stress or anxiety

Throughout the 12 week programme, you'll work closely with one of our lifestyle coaches on increasing your physical activity levels, making some lifestyle changes and improving your health.

Once you have finished the programme you will be eligible for a discounted leisure centre membership to help continue with your healthy lifestyle journey.


SafeFit is a free remote service for anyone in the UK with suspicion of or confirmed diagnosis of cancer. We put you in contact with a cancer exercise specialist who will help you during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

Young at Heart

Our Young at Heart programme for Barking and Dagenham residents over the age of 60, to improve mental and physical wellbeing. 

For £52 per year, you can access a range of social and active sessions (including zumba gold, bingo, line dancing, tai chi and arts and crafts) across the borough in leisure centres and Active Age Centres such as. 

Please see our full list of Young at Heart sessions and their dates, times and venues.

Breaking Boundaries

Breaking Boundaries is a three-year programme funded by Spirit of 2012 in partnership with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), bringing young people, families and communities together through the power of cricket.

Using the legacy of England’s incredible 2019 World Cup victory, Breaking Boundaries brings together different ethnicities and faiths as one cricket community, placing communities and young people at the heart of the programme.

Breaking Boundaries places Community Champions and organisations at the forefront of the project, bringing together different communities and young people through regular cricket activities, matches, community festivals, street parties, social gatherings, cricket teas and much more.

For more information or to get involved with any of the above, please email sam.bickmore@lbbd.gov.uk or call on 07866 036360

You can also follow Breaking Boundaries on Twitter and Instagram – bboundariesuk.

Sign up to our free programmes 

You could also participate in Street Tag which allows residents to record their distance walked, ran or cycled by scanning virtual tags with their smartphone at various locations.  You can then watch your total distance accumulate to climb up on the local leaderboard and win prizes. You can also receive bonus points by borrowing a book from one of the boroughs libraries. 

There are also a number of walking for health activities and physical activity sessions happening for residents across the borough throughout the week.  

You could also download and follow the NHS weight loss guide, their free 12-week diet and exercise plan and get more information on better health and wellbeing at MECC Link.

To hear from some residents who have achieved their goals through our programmes, visit our YouTube channel to watch their success stories!


By choosing to cycle some of your local journeys to school, work, or the shops, you can easily integrate gentle exercise into your daily routine.

The council offers free cycling training to anyone who lives, works or studies in the borough.

Find out more:

Cycling in the borough


Another great way to help you get active is by volunteering in your local community! Barking and Dagenham has lots of opportunities available from roles in libraries, children's centres and community food groups.

Become a volunteer

Local sports clubs

Below are a number of clubs that residents from Barking and Dagenham can join:

Eat healthier

Our online programmes you can take part in

A poor diet can lead to a number of negative side effects including cancer, diabetes, low confidence, stroke, infertility and high cholesterol. 

The NHS BMI (body mass index) calculator can help you find out if you're a healthy weight.  You can also use it to check your child's BMI.

If you think you may be suffering from any of the above conditions, you should speak to your GP or healthcare professional.  You should also consult your GP or healthcare professional before beginning any exercise or diet programme.

Also, don't forget that if you're under 18 and pregnant or if you're pregnant or have a child under four years old and are on benefits, you could get Healthy Start vouchers to help you buy some basic foods and milk.


LEAN (Learning, Exercise and Nutrition) Living

Our free LEAN Living programme is for people aged 18 and over, living in Barking and Dagenham and with a BMI of 25 or more.  

We will help you achieve and maintain a healthy weight by providing you with free access to exercise classes, nutrition information, gyms, health walks and provide you a discount to the borough's leisure centres.

There are 12 week programmes, 6 week programmes and a rolling programme where people can just join at any time.  They will also be delivered at times and venues to suit everyone.

View the schedule:

LEAN Living Healthy Eating programme (PDF, 200 KB)

Eat Well, Live Well and Feel Great (ELF)

For adults living in Barking and Dagenham with a learning disability, we have Eat Well, Live Well and Feel Great (ELF), which aims to increase physical health and wellbeing through physical activity and healthy eating sessions.

LEAN Beans

For children living in Barking and Dagenham, we have LEAN Beans, a club where all the family can join to learn, share and play.

The 12 week programme consists of families sharing their experiences and knowledge with others in the group, learning about nutrition in a fun, interactive and engaging way and lots of physical activity (suitable for all abilities) and games for the children.

There are also fun and informative online worksheets available for at home activities such as Food is Fuel and Food & Activity Diary.

It will also include free family leisure centre membership and a £20 supermarket voucher to spend on healthy shopping.



We also have HENRY, a 9 week programme for children living in Barking and Dagenham aged 0-5 and their parents, which covers a range of topics including nutrition, physical activity, and parenting skills. All taught by our friendly and supportive team.

To sign up to HENRY please download and complete the referral form:

HENRY referral form (PDF, 58 KB)

To sign up to any of our other programmes, please fill out our form below and a member of our team will aim to be in touch with you within five working days.

Sign up to our free programmes

You could also download and follow the NHS weight loss guide, their free 12-week diet and exercise plan.

To hear from some residents who have achieved their goals through our programmes, visit our YouTube channel to watch their success stories!


The British Heart Foundation has a recipe finder that contains hundreds of heart healthy recipes with full nutritional analysis. You can filter your search by cuisine, dietary requirements and condition so there's something to suit all tastes and diets.

They also have lots of recipes on eating healthy on a budget.

The BBC have lots of great freezable recipes.

Change4Life has some great tips and advice for healthier lunchboxes.

NHS choices has pulled together 10 surprising 100 calorie snacks - most of which only use three ingredients and take less than 5 minutes to prepare!

Be smoke free

Our online programmes you can take part in

Our Stop Smoking Service will provide free, friendly and confidential advice, support, free nicotine replacement medicines and free behavioural therapy to anyone who wants to be smoke free. 

You'll also be able to access lots of information on:

  • what makes you reach for a cigarette
  • tools and tips for stopping smoking
  • benefits of stopping smoking
  • smoking and pregnancy
  • making your home smoke free 

As well as improving your health and lowering your risk of heart disease and cancers by stopping smoking, you'll also be saving money!  Find out how much you could save using the Stop Smoking London savings calculator. 

To sign up to our Stop Smoking Service, please fill out our form below and a member of our team will aim to be in touch with you within five working days.

Sign up to our free programme

For more information on how to stop smoking and the benefits, visit Stop Smoking London and the NHS.

If you're pregnant and would like more specific information about stopping smoking when pregnant, you can find lots of help and information on the NHS.

To hear from some residents who have achieved their goals through our programmes, visit our YouTube channel to watch their success stories!

COVID-19 and smoking, what you need to know

If you smoke, now is the time to quit to help you stay healthy and stay out of hospital:

Today is the day

Success stories

Our programmes

Hear from residents who have improved their health and fitness through our programmes!

Watch more on our YouTube channel.


Hear from mum's sharing their experiences of HENRY.

“Hearing from other mums about the different things they are doing or trying was really insightful… I learnt that my idea of portions wasn’t correct, so now his portion sizes have reduced and there’s more variety. I was giving him healthy food but I realised it wasn’t balanced, so now there are different things on his plate… I would encourage others to attend because it is nine weeks of being nurtured as a mum, individually and together with your child, and with your extended family who don’t attend but benefit from the programme. You share experiences and you form bonds with parents which is important as it can be a bit isolating as a mum.” – Naomi

“The programme was amazing, I believe we were a family that needed the intervention to learn about healthier options and this has given me the knowledge to pass onto my children and husband and the rest of my family… It has made me try different foods that I wouldn’t have tried before and the children are benefiting from it because meals are now more exciting… I loved the venue because it is a public venue that we use a lot and so it is a place we feel comfortable in. The members of staff are absolutely amazing and I didn’t feel judged because everybody was here for the same reason… I would recommend the programme to anyone who has children because it teaches you things you thought you already knew, and if it can bring me and my family closer together it can bring any family closer together.’ – Amy

“I enjoyed the group work because the different parents have different parenting skills and we can learn from each other… I have learnt from the HENRY course to give [my child] options, not letting him control but giving him options and it is really working… It is only little changes that you need in your life that makes a difference.’ – Shazna

“The best part was to meet in the group and discuss what else you can do and share ideas with other mums… I learnt about the labelling on food, when I go shopping I want to do it quickly, so I don’t look at the labelling, but now I will do more research on it.” – Jolanta


We also have a great Healthy Lifestyle offer for schools, consisting of the HENRY and Lean Beans programmes and various workshops.

Healthy Lifestyle offer for schools (PDF, 435 KB)

To sign up or find out more, please contact the Healthy Lifestyle team.

Reading Well

Reading Well supports you to understand and manage your health and wellbeing using helpful reading.

The books are all recommended by health experts, as well as people living with the conditions covered and their relatives and carers.

You can be recommended a title by a health professional, or you can visit your local library and take a book out yourself. If the book you need is not available, you can reserve it online to pick up from any library in the borough.

There are five book lists available: 

  1. Reading Well for mental health
  2. Reading Well for young people
  3. Reading Well for children
  4. Reading Well for dementia 
  5. Reading Well for long term conditions

Reading Well was recognised by the Royal Society for Public Health as a finalist for the 2017 Public Mental Health and Wellbeing Award

Reading Well Mood-boosting Books

Reading Well Mood-boosting Books is a national promotion of uplifting titles, including novels, short stories, poetry and non-fiction for all ages.  The books are all recommended by readers and reading groups. 

All titles can be borrowed from Barking and Dagenham Libraries. If you are not a library member you can join online

Reading Well website 


Contact us

020 8724 8018