The terms ‘health’ and ‘longevity’ are often interchanged with each other. Health is a condition of bodily, mental and emotional well-being where infirmity and disease are absent. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the best way to become healthy is through a healthy diet and an active lifestyle that promotes general health. The best way to achieve overall health is through a combination of diet, regular exercise, proper stress management, and prevention of diseases and health disorders. The WHO further states that all these aspects can be influenced by simple changes in lifestyle that incorporate diet and exercise and other preventive measures. These facets have proven effective in reducing the burden of illness and diseases and extending lifespan.
According to a series of research studies conducted across different countries in the WHO, obesity is one of the most prominent determinants for health conditions. Overweight people have increased risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, stroke, and heart disease. In addition to these, overweight people have increased risks of type 2 diabetes and certain cancers. Other causative factors for obesity include the increase in the consumption of fast foods, the decreased intake of fruit and vegetables, and the lack of daily physical activity. These changes in lifestyle are also considered as important determinants for maintaining healthy weights. These changes in lifestyle however, cannot be accomplished by individual effort alone; they need to be addressed and taken into consideration by society as a whole.
There are many factors that influence health status. The predominant determinant according to WHO is age. The older you are, the more likely you are to develop serious diseases and health conditions, and you are at greater risk of getting old-related diseases such as cancer, cardiovascular diseases, osteoporosis, Alzheimer’s disease, and diabetes. It was also found out that stress, whether mental or physical, has an impact on your health status.
On the other hand, there are also several facets of social well Being which can be influenced or affected by a person’s health. For example, a person’s mental health is greatly affected by the quality of relationships they have. Other important facets of social well-being include physical health, cognition, social well-being, emotional health, and physiological health.
Stress has been found out to be a contributor to various disorders such as depression and anxiety. If you have constant stress or higher levels of stress every day, it is very likely that you are at risk of developing several kinds of non-communicable diseases. Some of these non-communicable diseases include heart disease, hypertension, asthma, high blood pressure, stroke, and even cancer. Thus, maintaining a healthy lifestyle involves dealing with stress and finding ways to reduce or eliminate its negative effects.
As the above mentioned, healthy lifestyle and proper stress management is necessary in order to reduce the chance of acquiring a mental illness in the future. Studies have shown that there is a strong genetic component involved in a person’s likelihood of acquiring mental illnesses. Thus, if your family has a history of mental illness or mental health problems, chances are you may as well. Thus, it is highly recommended that you take control of your health by dealing with stress and addressing its underlying causes.