Generally, but more common in most middle-income countries like Ghana, and worst in low income countries, health is a "deficiency need." People don't think very much about their health until they are deprived of it. Personal and environmental hygiene; balance diet; physical and mental exercise; and regular scheduled health check-ups are overlooked by many. Perhaps this is due to ignorance or negligence of the importance of such personal health habits, or these habits are traded for so called "busy life schedules" which are considered to be personal priorities underlying successful living.
However, the so called "industrious" worker or student might at a point in time be deprived of all his productive activities when he he's taken ill. Then he finds himself at the mercy of medical intervention. He suffers pain and distress, and worst of all, he may find himself in the cell of management for some incurable diseases or syndromes, where there are many restrictions in terms of diet and and other physical and social activities. Even the poor manages to spend huge sums of money to seek personal health improvent during such times.
Hence the saying that 'Prevention is better than cure' will remain indisputable especially in health. The principal goal of health promotion is to safeguard public health. Why then should people refuse to take responsibility for their own health. No one should treat personal health with contempt. Therefore, every individual should show much concern for his or her own health because just as ignorance of the law is no excuse so will his or her fate be in the hands of a health plaque.
Now what is personal health? Personal health refers to the wellness of the individual. While personal health care is provided to people those who are not able to take care of themselves. It involves people with certain mental disorder, physically challenged people, etc.
Personal Health is the ability to take charge of your health by making conscious decisions to be healthy. It not only refers to the physical well being of an individual but it also comprises the wellness of emotional, intellect, social, economical, spiritual and other areas of life. And a balance between these must be important to us. Personal health is the responsibility of the individual.
When it. comes to nutrition, food choices affect your health — how you feel today, tomorrow, and in the future. Good nutrition is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle. Combined with physical activity, your diet can help you to reach and maintain a healthy weight, reduce your risk of chronic diseases (like heart disease and cancer), and promote your overall health. The risk factors for adult chronic diseases, like hypertension and type 2 diabetes, are increasingly seen in younger ages, often a result of unhealthy eating habits and increased weight gain. Dietary habits established in childhood often carry into adulthood, so teaching children how to eat healthy at a young age will help them stay healthy throughout their life.
The link between good nutrition and healthy weight, reduced chronic disease risk, and overall health is too important to ignore. By taking steps to eat healthy, you'll be on your way to getting the nutrients your body needs to stay healthy, active, and strong. As with physical activity, making small changes in your diet can go a long way, and it's easier than you think! The same applies to all other aspects under our control -- whether personal hygiene, or environmental hygiene or pursuing regular systemic health screening of the body even in the absence of a disease.
Everyone may consider the following outlined steps to get him on the road to better health. They will help you to maintain good physical and mental health.
•Make physical exercise a habit. If you don't exercise at all, a brief walk is a great way to start. If you do, it's a good way to add more exercise to your day. It causes chemical reactions that are proven to reduce anxiety and stress and put you in a good mood in addition to reducing your risk for some cardiovascular diseases.
• Check your diet. Diet plays a crucial role in mental health. You may consult a nutritionist for a personalized guide adapted to your needs. Additionally, eat one extra fruit or vegetable a day. Fruits and vegetables are inexpensive, taste good, and are good for everything from your brain to your bowels.
•Make a breakfast count. Start the day with some fruit and a serving of whole grains, like oatmeal, bran flakes, or whole-wheat toast.
•Stop drinking your calories. Cutting out just one sugar-sweetened soda or calorie-laden latte can easily save you 100 or more calories a day. Over a year, that can translate into a 10-pound weight loss.
•Wash your hands often. Scrubbing up with soap and water often during the day is a great way to protect your heart and health. The flu, pneumonia, and other infections can be very hard on the heart.
•Resist anxiety. Taking a moment each day to acknowledge the blessings in your life is one way to start tapping into other positive emotions. These have been linked with better health, longer life, and greater well-being, just as their opposites — chronic anger, worry, and hostility — contribute to high blood pressure and heart disease. Learn how to focus on the present rather than being preoccupied with past or future events. This will help you savor life’s little pleasures that you would otherwise miss.
•Develop a good opinion of yourself. According to mental health experts, high self-esteem is the best tool we can use against difficulties in life.
•Lack of sleep affects your mental health as it can cause emotional and psychological problems. Go to bed at a reasonable hour and try to get eight (8) hours of sleep. It will help you achieve maximum recovery and face the next day with more vigor.
• Get help where necessary. At some point in your life, you may need to ask for help. If so, don’t hesitate! It takes courage to seek help but it can really change your life. Know that there are many resources out there. Talk to your pharmacist. He will guide you in finding the best options.
Dr. Kingsley Preko
Dr. A.T. Derick
School of Medical Sciences
University of Cape Coast
James Nketsiah Brown
Physician Assistant Student
University of Cape Coast
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