Fuel Poverty and Health

Fuel poverty can have a devastating effect on people’s physical and emotional health.  

The indoor environment is a source of health risk factor as most people spend more than 90% of time indoors. Older people, young children and babies are less able to detect temperature changes. 

  • thermometer-305319_128018-24°C, the recommended temperature for a living room, known as the comfort zone and has no associated risk.
  • Below 16°C, increased risk of respiratory disorders
  • Below 12°C, increased blood pressure and viscosity, puts a strain on the cardiovascular system
  • Below 9°C, after 2 or more hours, deep body temperature falls, risk of hypothermia

Did you know?

In Britain, a cold spell in winter is followed by;

  • Two days later by a sudden rise in heart attacks
  • Five days later a big rise in the number of strokes
  • Twelve days later a rise in respiratory illnesses

Research suggests that living in cold and damp homes not only increases the number of excess winter deaths but it exacerbates a number of other health conditions, such as influenza; heart disease; strokes; the elderly person’s resistance to respiratory disease (which falls at lower temperatures); high blood pressure (as blood pressure increases at lower temperatures); recovery time from long term illness (as this is also increased at lower temperatures); and children and young people’s respiratory conditions.


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Poverty and poor energy efficiency can affect all aspects of family life as shown in the diagram below. Worrying about paying for energy can cause stress, anxiety and depression. Many families today have to make the choice between heating or eating. 


Fuel Poverty (2) 



Contact us on 01631 565183 or enquiries@alienergy.org.uk to request a call from an Affordable Warmth Advisor or to enquire about a workshop or talk.
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