It seems that our Western lifestyle produces various diseases in many people. It’s not entirely clear why but diseases such as heart disease, stroke and cancers seem to occur much more in people who live in Western countries than those who live in developing countries.
And billions of dollars are spent every year trying to keep all of us healthy.
But there is a better way.
Most people expect that they will stay healthy in this way. Do nothing until you get sick. When you get sick go to the doctor and the doctor will, (hopefully), make you well.
In some cases that works. Modern medicine is able to produce miraculous results for some people who have diseases, for example some cancers, that were completely untreatable in the past and would, in the past have produced a death sentence.
However there is a significant cost to this approach. The first cost is of course the cost of the health treatment undertaken by the individual. Treatments for serious diseases such as cancer can be very significantly expensive and in the US can often lead to bankruptcy.
And of course the second cost is to the individual, because not everybody is cured. For many people the approach of waiting until you get sick than visiting the doctor fails. The doctor is unable to cure you and you are unable to get rid of the disease.
So what’s the better way?
A better way of ensuring that you stay healthy, (though not with any guarantee), is to live a lifestyle which reduces your risk of disease. In other words to take action yourself while you are still healthy to ensure that you remain healthy. This places the responsibility for your own health on you rather than expecting your doctor to take the responsibility of curing you.
How do you do this?
There’s a wealth of information about staying healthy available to anyone. But the principles are relatively simple.
1. Eat a good diet. There is no doubt that the quality of our diet affects our health. A poor diet can produce poor health whilst a good diet can produce good health. It’s not a guarantee however if you eat a diet high in fruit and vegetables and home-cooked food and low in takeaway and junk food rich in salt, sugar and fat then you improve your likelihood of staying healthy.
2. Do plenty of exercise. There is ample evidence that exercise helps improve our health in so many ways. Regular exercise is probably the single most important way that you can improve your health.
3. Don’t smoke. Smoking kills you.
There’s plenty of other things as well, but that’s a good start. Lately I’ve been researching the health benefits of omega 3 supplements because it seems there is ample evidence that omega 3, which is a fat that is found in fish, is extremely good for you it helps reduce your risk of heart attack among other things.
I’ve started taking fish oil supplements although it’s not easy to work out which is the best fish oil supplement (start here). However it seems to me that the relatively limited cost of a quality fish oil supplement is well worthwhile. Omega 3 is also very good for children.
There’s plenty more as well. Just spend a little time online and research a healthy lifestyle.
What would you rather? To get sick and hoped desperately that the doctor can cure you or to never get sick at all? I’m choosing the latter.