alert

This page was published under a previous government and is available for archival and research purposes.

You are here

Healthy living

Browse creative ideas to encourage and promote healthy living.

health cross symbol

View the ideas submitted to Healthy living

The problem

Although traditional health care often focuses on care after someone is sick, healthy living – for example, eating well, exercising regularly, and not smoking – is one of the best ways to prevent health problems in the future.

We know that:

  • eating healthy can help protect you from heart disease and stroke, and lower your risk of type 2 diabetes and some kinds of cancer
  • people who are physically active are less likely to develop heart disease and other chronic health problems
  • if you stop smoking, within 24 hours, your risk of heart attack starts to drop and within 5 years your risk of stroke is the same as someone who never smoked

Although we offer programs and supports to help people stay healthy, have introduced menu labelling to help people make informed and healthier food choices and are helping smokers quit, what new and creative ideas and technologies should we consider to help people stay healthy?

Who we're trying to help

While everyone can benefit from adopting healthy living, due to factors beyond their control there are groups in the province that may be more at risk for developing certain chronic diseases, such as, diabetes, cancer, heart disease and asthma. These groups include, people:

  • living on low incomes
  • in rural and remote communities
  • with mental health and addiction concerns
  • from certain racial backgrounds


We are looking for ideas that promote health for everyone and/or offer new ways of connecting with groups that have traditionally been hard to reach.

What we're doing/have done

Healthy living

We fund 36 Public Health Units (opens in a new window) across the province. They offer healthy living programs, mental health promotion and disease prevention information for members of their local communities.

Smoke-Free Ontario

In 2007, we launched Smoke-Free Ontario (opens in a new window) which combines programs, policies, laws and public education to help:

  • smokers quit
  • protect people from exposure to second-hand smoke
  • encourage young people to never start

Healthy kids

Through the Healthy Kids Community Challenge (opens in a new window) we give money, training and social marketing tools to 45 communities across the province, to run programs about healthy eating and being active for kids and their families. This program reaches 40% of Ontario’s population including Indigenous populations served by six Aboriginal Health Access Centres and Community Health Centres. 

We also offer free fruit and vegetables to elementary and middle school students in the districts of Algoma, Porcupine and Sudbury through the Northern Fruit and Vegetable Program. The program reaches over 190 schools and approximately 37,000 students every year.

We partner with the Ministry of Children and Youth Services to help pay for the Student Nutrition Program (opens in a new window), which helps provide nutritious meals and snacks in schools. During the 2015-16 school year, the program served nearly 900,000 children and youth.

Menu labelling

We also introduced the Healthy Menu Choices Act (opens in a new window), which requires all food-service chains with 20 or more locations in Ontario, to post the number of calories in the food and drink items they sell.

Learn more

Learn more about:


242 ideas submitted to Healthy living


Support Prevention

This project was carefully considered at the Public Workshops, but was not selected to move forward.

How idea would work:

Read more
Created on November 2, 2017 by Sonia Dudnic Sreedharan.

Supporting mental health through time in nature

This project was carefully considered at the Public Workshops, but was not selected to move forward.

The idea is to run a series of research projects targeted to people with mental health and addiction concerns. It would build on existing research documenting the health benefits of time in nature and green spaces.

Read more
Created on November 3, 2017 by Greenbelt_Tom.

Teach children in school how to make healthy meals and then eat it (lunch)

This project was carefully considered at the Public Workshops, but was not selected to move forward.

Every day children will be taught how to make healthy meals, make them and then they eat it for lunch. You get the knowledge at a young age and the children are getting healthier by eating healthy food.

Read more
Created on October 22, 2017 by Energy Light.  3 comments

urban nature - school program (sustainable living)

This project was carefully considered at the Public Workshops, but was not selected to move forward.

Receive proposals on school-based educational sustainability programs. Choose a winner based on the credibility and robustness of the plan. Work with the current programs in the schools, in partnership, to build on what has been established.

Read more
Created on October 19, 2017 by JSugar.

Urban nature fund

This project was carefully considered at the Public Workshops, but was not selected to move forward.

Create a fund to promote community engaging with nature and sustainability. For example, have recycling programs in schools were kids are engaged in activities. Or create a program where seniors can garden in a community spot.

Read more
Updated on October 19, 2017 by JSugar.  5 comments

Virtually map our parks and integrate them with Google Maps

This project was carefully considered at the Public Workshops, but was not selected to move forward.

Currently, you can navigate through the roads of many of our parks. Google provides this service. In most cases, Google Maps stops at the road.

Read more
Created on October 30, 2017 by Hubmedia.

Why we should have more parks

This project was carefully considered at the Public Workshops, but was not selected to move forward.

Having a group of people who have an environmental club that can take care of the park and having it Eco friendly so if people bring their dogs to go there, they won't get harmed by biting toxic things or food that's been thrown on the g

Read more
Created on November 2, 2017 by Reena12.  1 comment

Global Rate Increase : Guaranteed Income Pilot vs. ODSP & OW

This idea did not move past government review because it would not help support any of the Budget Talks focus areas.

Review the current rates of Ontario Works and Ontario Disability Support Programs in comparison to the rate of the Guaranteed Income Supplement Pilot.

Read more
Created on October 15, 2017 by JSugar.  1 comment

13 Questions (13Qs) - Public Health Suicide Prevention Initiative

This idea did not move past government review because

Suicide is a major cause of premature and preventable death. It is estimated, that in 2009 alone, there were about 100,000 years of potential life lost to Canadians under the age of 75 as a result of suicides.

Read more
Created on November 3, 2017 by PhJD.  1 comment

20 % of Transportation Budget for Cycling Infrastructure

This idea did not move past government review because it would duplicate a service that is already available, work that has been completed or work underway.

The United Nations has stated that government transportation budgets should be allocated so that at least 20% of the Transportation Budget is used to provide infrastructure for non-motorized transportation especially cycling and pedestrian infrast

Read more
Created on October 24, 2017 by Bruce Rosove.  2 comments

Pages