Maintaining a Healthy Body There are many theories and definitions to what a Healthy Body is. Health can be defined in terms of the absence of disease, which can be described as a negative approach to health (1). However another definition is that health are a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease (2). Each individual body is different therefore it can be difficult to perceive if they are healthy. By looking at a person you can see if they are in good physical health, that is, you can see if they are overweight (obese), or if they are extremely underweight (anorexia).
However a healthy body is so much more than how a person looks physically and what they eat or how much exercise they do, although they do play a very important factor. Although we don’t have the power to change some risk factors concerning our health, such as family history, sex or age – there are some steps we can take to help reduce the risks (3).
By smoking you can increase the risk of over 50 serious health conditions (4). Not only is smoking the most significant risk factor for heart disease (3), it also causes around 90% of lung cancers and also cancer in other parts of the body (4).
Regular Exercise, scientific research shows that by doing regular exercise this not only will this help a person be healthier physically it will also help mentally and increase our energy levels. Exercise can also help you to sleep better and decrease the risk of stress and anxiety and can also help boost self-confidence (5).
Regular check-ups, Preventative checkups are important to maintain our body’s vital organs, such as the heart. By detecting early problems this can help in the curing process and in getting the correct treatment or lifestyle changes that may be needed (6).
A Healthy Diet, Eating the correct foods is not only good to help maintain a healthy weight it can help to reduce the risk of developing mains other illness including coronary heart disease (7). Healthy eating also helps reduce the risk of high blood pressure and diabetes. A low cholesterol level can also be maintained through a good diet and this can also help to reduce the risk of some cancers (7). However although the above steps are all recommended by doctors and health officials there is also reports to show that some may actually cause more health problems in the long run.
According to a report in the daily mail, the worry of preventative check- ups may cause unnecessary anxiety, a health issue in itself. It is said that some of the blame lays with Health Promotion, in the last 10 years the number of fit and healthy 25 year old men demanding full health check has soared – but they don’t need it. Dr Vivienne Nathanson says that although it is important to take an interest in our health very rarely these tests pick up anything significant.
MRI and CT scans are great if we have some can of symptom and have an idea there is something wrong with you, but they can at times also pick up abnormalities which are classed as unimportant and pose no danger to our health. People then tend to worry them about their health in the future and may undertake further test which leave them venerable to stress, financial worries (8). We have always been told that chocolate is bad for your health as it is full of sugar and fat, but now according to research a piece of dark chocolate a day may help reduce the risk of high blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease (9).
We are now also hearing that a glass or two of red wine a day may also help to reduce not only the risk of heart attack but also good for our lungs, brain, kidneys and more. Red wine contains anti-oxidants, this helps keep your arteries clear from plaque and therefore reduces the risk of heart disease (10). The worlds commonest disease is composed of two common diseases, periodontal (gum) disease and dental caries (tooth decay) (11). Our gums and teeth can give us vital clues to other health issues.
Bleeding gums, dry mouth, fungal infections and cavities – these may be an indication to diabetes of some more severe conditions such as HIV and Leukemia (12). Another serious illness is Oral cancer, the main risk factors for oral cancer are tobacco or alcohol and if these two are combined together it appears to multiply the risk (13). Oral cancer including lip, salivary gland, oral and pharyngeal tissues is the one of the cancer groups with approx 4500 new cases a year in the UK, with over 2000 deaths.
If oral cancer is caught in the earliest stage the survival rate is around 90% but if it is not detected until the later stage this falls to around just 20% (13). Researchers also suggest that poor Oral health can lead a risk to heart disease. Inflammation in the body, including the mouth and gums, plays an important role in the buildup of clogged arteries which can over time lead to a heart attack (14). As the main organ in our circulatory system it is important to look after our heart. The purpose of the heart is to pump blood around our body.
Not looking after our heart can result in many problems for our health, a lot of which have been mentioned previously such as high blood pressure, angina and some more serious conditions like heart failure, heart disease and heart attacks. To define ‘How to Maintain a Healthy Body’, there are many factors to consider. Having a healthy body can simply be not being ill, as health can often be taken for granted, and only when illness interferes with peoples life’s is it considered (15), however as you may have discovered there is so much more to health that eating healthy and doing exercise.
Things such as Oral health maybe considered as brushing are teeth on a regular basis whereas in fact it has so much more to it. We need to do many things in moderation in order to help maintain a healthy body. REFERENCES 1. Beryl Stretch and Mary Whitehouse (ed), BTEC National – Health and Social Care, Book 1, (2007),Harcourt Publishers, ISBN 978-0-435499-15-0 2. Kevin Lucas and Barbara Lloyd, Health Promotion: Evidence and Experience, ISBN 0761940065 3. Mayo Clinic, ‘Heart Disease – prevention’ Strategies to help protect your heart.
Written by Mayo Clinic Staff. www. mayoclinic. com/health/heart-disease-prevention/wo00041 4. National Health Service, ‘What are the health risks of smoking? ’ No author stated. www. nhs. uk/chq/pages/2344. aspx? categoryID=53&subcategoryID=536 5. Essential life skills, ‘The benefits of regular exercise’ a website dedicated to contributing to your personal development and self-realization, by Zorka Hereford. www. essentiallifeskills. net/benefits-of-regular-exercise. html 6. Dr. Fayaz Shawl, ‘Cardiovascular Disease Prevention’ an information page from Dr.
Shawl, Interventional Cardiology Washington Adventist Hospital, by Dr Fayaz Shawl. www. shawltechnique/prevention. asp 7. British Heart Foundation (BHF), ‘Healthy Eating’ Information on how healthy eating can prevent heart problems. No author stated. www. bhf. org. uk/heart-health/prevention/healthy-eating. aspx 8. Daily Mail, 6 Nov 2007, ‘Are check-ups bad for you? ’ A health article written by Anna Hodgekiss. 9. Science Daily, ‘Chocolate might reduce blood pressure and heart disease’, this study was published online in the European Heart Journal in March 2010. ww. sciencedaily. com/releases/2010/03/100330092809. html 10. Health and wellbeing, ‘What’s good for you? ’ Reported by Dr. Andrew Rochford. www. health. ninemsn. com. au/whatsgoodforyou/theshow/694576 11. Janet Griggiths and Steve Boyle, Holistic Oral Care, 2nd edition, (2005) published by Stephen Hancocks LTD. ISBN 0954614526 12. Web MD, ‘Oral Health – The mouth-Body Connection’ WebMD magazine feature on Oral health written by Heather Hatfield. www. webmd. om/oral-health/features/oral-health-the-mouth-body-connection 13. R. S Levine and C. R Stillman-Lowe, The scientific Basis of Oral Health Education, (2004), published by British Dental Association, ISBN 090458884 14. BBC News, 28th May 2010,’Brush Teeth to Prevent Heart Disease’, written by BBC news health reporter Emma Wilkinson. 15. L. Ewles Promoting Health, A Practical Guide, 5th edition, (2003), published by Elsevier Science publishing, ISBN 0702026638. Maintaining A Healthy Body
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