Do we control our own health?

Information about a healthy lifestyle is everywhere today – physical activity, proper nutrition, 8 hours of sleep – all these factors are necessary for a long and fulfilling life. It may seem that following these unspoken rules allows you to take control of your health, but this is not entirely true – there are many variables beyond our control that have a huge impact on the body. Ultimately, will you claim that you will definitely live 80, 90, or even 100 years? Especially if you suffer from a number of chronic diseases and doubt the quality of food products and the environmental situation. For example, previous studies have shown that exposure to tobacco, alcohol, processed foods and fossil fuels leads to one in three deaths worldwide, and environmental pollution, mainly due to the use of fossil fuels, is the leading environmental cause of premature death .

Are we in control of our own health? Are we in control of our own health? Image: Photo.

Are we in control of our own health? Image:

Healthy lifestyle

It's no secret that health depends on lifestyle. Thus, people who neglect physical activity face more problems than those who regularly play sports. Physical activity is known to be an excellent preventative against chronic diseases and mental health problems. It is important to note that even small changes in daily health habits and behaviors can lead to significant improvements in public health.

The researchers also note that increasing and maintaining levels of physical activity is associated with reduced all-cause mortality, as well as improved quality of life and physical function and weight loss. In addition, a balanced diet is important for preventing obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases in general, as well as maintaining a healthy weight.

Healthy lifestyle. Excess weight is the cause of a number of chronic diseases. Image: Photo.

Excess weight is the cause of a number of chronic diseases. Image:

A previous study published in the journal Nature Mental Health found that a healthy lifestyle that includes moderate alcohol consumption, a healthy diet, regular physical activity, good sleep and frequent social interactions, as well as avoidance of smoking and sedentary lifestyle, reduces the risk of depression.

Read also: There are more than a billion obese people in the world

Recall that according to the World Health Organization (WHO), approximately one in 20 adults suffers from depression, and this condition poses a significant public health burden worldwide. Factors influencing the onset of depression are complex and include a combination of biology and lifestyle factors. Don't miss out on what depression is and why it needs to be treated here!

Under corporate control

So, we know about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle and giving up bad habits, but does a healthy lifestyle guarantee a long and carefree life? Of course, we can do a lot to influence the body, but we do not have control over all internal processes. Moreover, even if we do everything we can to stay healthy, we can still get sick.

And although years of research have proven that quitting smoking has positive health effects, no one can ever give us any guarantees.

Under the control of corporations. Environmental pollution leads to an increase in premature mortality. Image: Photo.

Environmental pollution leads to an increase in premature mortality. Image:

One of the reasons for this state of affairs is environmental pollution. We are talking mainly about the use of fossil fuels, which is the main environmental cause of premature death. We also note that more than 90% of deaths associated with environmental pollution occur in low- and middle-income countries.

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All of the above means that the main risk factor for disease and death around the world are corporations that produce and market products that are harmful to health (and the environment). At the same time, corporations themselves, as history shows, are aware of the dangers of their own products but prefer not to talk about it.

For example, when major tobacco companies Philip Morris and R.J. Reynolds bought food companies Kraft, General Foods and Nabisco, then developed marketing strategies, flavors and colors to expand the range, as well as fatty, sweet and salty foods, which are linked to obesity by activating our reward systems and encouraging us to consume more – writes ScienceAlert.

Under the control of corporations. Corporations play a huge role in polluting the environment and deteriorating the health of the world's population. Image: Photo.

Corporations play a huge role in polluting the environment and deteriorating the health of the world's population. Image:

Years of experience have shown that these effective tactics are actually shared and strategically transferred from one industry or company to another. To prevent the situation from worsening further, researchers advise putting forward strict requirements for corporations, including product registration and open access to scientific research.

This is interesting: Scientists have discovered an unexpected cause of depression: air pollution

Requirements, as experts note, must come from both the state and the general public. Otherwise, the state of the environment, and along with it the health of the population, will deteriorate, and even minimal control over one’s own body can simply be forgotten.

How to maintain health?

Despite the fact that life is full of accidents and unpredictable events, maintaining a healthy image is not a meaningless activity. This is confirmed by hundreds of previously conducted scientific studies. It is also necessary to remember and understand that health and lifestyle require work, strength and patience. And, of course, regular visits to the doctor.

As for nutrition, researchers from Harvard University recommend introducing as many fiber-rich foods as possible into your diet – whole grains, fresh fruits and vegetables. The fact is that these food components reduce inflammation, which can lead to damage to tissues, joints, artery walls and organs.

How to stay healthy? Proper nutrition is the key to health. Image: Photo.

Proper nutrition is the key to health. Image:

This is interesting: Why losing weight when you're overweight doesn't improve your health

Another element of a healthy diet is avoiding processed foods. Sweets, foods made with highly refined grains, and sweetened drinks can cause spikes in blood sugar levels, making you feel constantly hungry. Recall that high blood sugar is associated with the development of diabetes, obesity, heart disease and even dementia.

The Mediterranean diet meets all the criteria for good health, and there is strong evidence that it is effective in preventing heart attack, stroke and premature death. The diet includes plenty of olive oil, fruits, vegetables, nuts and fish, little red meat and processed meats, and moderate amounts of cheese and wine, says the Harvard Health website.

But that’s not the case. just in nutrition – physical activity is also essential for good health, as it significantly reduces the risk of heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, breast and colon cancer and depression. Physical activity improves sleep and stamina, so experts recommend doing it for about 150 minutes every week, even brisk walking.

How to stay healthy? Strength training, which is important for maintaining balance, bone health, blood sugar control and mobility, is recommended 2-3 times a week. Image: Photo.

Strength training, which is important for balance, bone health, blood sugar control and mobility, is recommended 2-3 times a week . Image:

Read also: The easiest ways to check your health in 1 minute

Another important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle is reducing stress. And this is not surprising – there is a direct connection between stress and various disorders. Fortunately, there are many known ways to deal with stress, which my colleague Ramis Ganiev previously talked about in more detail, I highly recommend reading. Be healthy!