Health care and why prevention is important

By Mark Magennis, 12:26 pm on

The generational changes in health

From previous generations to now, there has been a significant downward change in the health of our children, parents and the ageing population.  Though our life expectancy is longer than our forebearers, many people who live to an old age are significantly affected by illnesses. They often requiring a concoction of medications to alleviate the symptoms.  Did you know that the average person will consume up to 46,000 pills in their lifetime?  That is a lot of medication!

According to World Health Organisation (WHO), about 55 million people died worldwide in 2011.  Of these, two thirds died from non-communicable diseases such as cancer, diabetes or chronic cardiovascular and lung disease. Our poor lifestyle, nutrition choices and habits have led to the global obesity crisis we see today. They also contribute to deaths from non-communicable diseases.  In the past, the biggest cause of death was communicable diseases, such as influenza, the plague, Measles and so on.

What has changed with our health?

Our lifestyles in the past relied heavily on good diet, exercise, sleep, sunlight, social connection, customs, culture and traditions.  Now, we often sacrifice some of these to accommodate our busy lifestyles.  We don’t sleep enough, we make food choices which do not fuel our bodies, we drink alcohol or smoke cigarettes, we lead a sedentary lifestyle and we are becoming less socially connected.  Such poor lifestyle choices can lead to stiff joints, arthritis, autoimmune disease, heart disease, diabetes or cancer, as well as an inability to easily recover from common diseases like colds. The first step for many of us when we are sick is to visit the Doctor to treat the symptoms. This is fine as a short term solution, however longer term, we need to inspect the source of the issue.

How can I prevent my body from becoming sick?

The definition of ‘prevention’ is to keep from occurring, avert, hinder or stall.  When we talk about preventing modern disease, we want to stop the body from becoming ill with a chronic condition.  It is easier to prevent your body becoming ill than it is to cure it. Though the body is resilient, there is a point of no return. Why wait till you get to that point to look after your life? Why give your body the wrong fuel or spend your time in non-productive ways?

With some simple lifestyle changes, it is possible to wake up in the morning free from any aches and pains and to continue to enjoy life.  The path to better living may be more simple than you think.

6 ways to help prevent disease and illness and maintain your health

  1. Eat a diet of good wholesome foods, made from single ingredients.  Try slow cooked meats, lean white meat, fish,nuts, eggs, seeds, legumes, whole grains, spices, vegetables and fruit.
  2. Exercise at least 3 times a week – swim, run, walk, play bowls, tai chi or yoga.
  3. Declutter your home from chemicals.
  4. Create a habit for good, well rested sleep of around 8 hours per night.
  5. Turn electronic devices off at least 1 hour before you go to bed.
  6. Have regular social interactions that don’t involve social media.  It can be face to face, family dinners, friends, adventures and outings.

To find out how we can help you achieve a balanced approach to ageing in your home, visit www.homecareassistancebrisbanenorth.com.au or call 07 3314 2575.

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