Choices

To a large extent health is something we do.

While there are aspects that may be beyond our control, all things considered our day by day choices, which become habits, will contribute hugely to our condition of health.

What we choose to do is determined by our knowledge, experience, social and cultural expectations, training and programming.  If we have normal intelligence in today’s world, we have access to a large volume of knowledge related to how our body works and disease processes.  While there may be conflicting opinions about what the basic facts are telling us, and some downright lies about what actually are facts, the major body of evidence gives us some solid points to navigate from. With some logical reasoning, we can reach our own conclusions about the type of habits we want to have dominating us.  To a large degree how we live will determine how we die—whether we live long and die short, or live short and die long; whether we live with a compromised immune system, degenerative lifestyle induced disease processes and feel poorly, or have a strong system and generally feel energetic and optimistic.

While they may relieve us of a sense of our personal responsibility, ‘luck’, ‘karma’ and ‘chance’ are in reality cruel masters to submit one’s life to, for instead of being master of one’s own life we become slaves to other’s choices and wishes.  While smoking, or eating junk foods (or any of a number of other programmed life habits) may be making the people producing and marketing these addictive and health destroying products rich, what are these habits really doing for the person practicing them?  Sometimes taking a long, sober, look at facts, reality and our life is a tremendous diagnostic tool.

According to a recent study conducted by the Institute of Public Health in Ireland (http://www.publichealth.ie) there is expected to be a 40 % increase in serious chronic disease conditions by the year 2020.  Conditions named were High blood pressure, Coronary Heart Disease (CHD), Stroke and Diabetes; both type 1 and type 2.  Take a minute and think about the number of people you know who currently suffer from one of these conditions, and then add another 4 for every ten.  This is a staggering amount not only as it relates to the stress it will place on an already straining health care system, but suggests huge increases in human suffering, shortened life expectancy, decreased productivity and loss of quality in the life experience by individuals suffering from these problems.

The New Year is always a good time to think about life change.  What needs changing in your life to promote a higher level of health?  It takes about 45 days to build a new habit.  There is nothing mysterious about this process, it involves neural-pathways that strengthen with use (check out this video clip on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEwg8TeipfQ)   Good habits make us slaves, bad habits destroy us.  Add to this the power of chemical addiction, and you have a powerful tool to enslave people for the sake of enriching the providers of the addictive substances.

The WHO (World Health Organization) defines health as: ‘..a  state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.’

Choices—take control of your life.  You might as well get some of the good stuff too!

See also:

 http://www.hse.ie/eng/services/healthpromotion/