What is a lifestyle disease? When you think of a disease you usually think of the H1N1 swine flu or tuberculosis something you can catch from someone. A lifestyle disease is associated with your environment, by the way you live your life and the choices you make everyday.
When you go out and eat a lot of junk food everyday, drink too much alcohol, smoke, lie on your couch and watch TV all day these things all contribute to you getting what they call non communicable diseases. These are diseases like diabetes, cancer, stroke, heart disease and others.
Our lifestyle choice c many times in the beginning start out as minor issues like a little weight problem, then a sore knee. If we continue with that lifestyle then obesity slowly sets in and the sore knee turns into a major knee joint problem that doctors many times recommends operation instead of losing the weight which caused it in the first place. I see it happening everyday to my friends.
Hang on it gets worse. Over time this person gets diabetes and not to mention high blood pressure and other joint problems like their back and shoulders. From here they start to develop heart related diseases. When I talk to them about their problems they show me a handful of pills they take so they do not have to lose the weight. In other words they do not want to change their lifestyle.
People now days want to treat the symptom and not the cause of the problem, yet they complain all day that their knee is so sore. They tell the doctor to give them a stronger pain killer. Next thing you know they are scheduled for knee surgery. Why? The signs are all there that it is the weight that is causing the problem. Now these are smart people. They are just ignorant of the fact that they got to change their lifestyle. Imagine the problems uneducated people and their families with little medical care have. Their health problems are far worse.
A lot of this is due to lack of proper health care, low income, poor eating choices, lack of education and not enough exercise. Also poor common sense plays a big part in the choices people make because even educated people get these lifestyle diseases.
We are bombarded all day by advertisements for the newest double chocolate chip cookie or some new burger place opening up does not help in fact it just adds to the problem. What about the beer ads which try to be funny to make people watch and remember them.
It is all about choices. What we eat and what we feed our children is our choice. You see children now days getting things like childhood diabetes which was unheard of 20 years ago. These lifestyle diseases are spreading at an alarming rate and are turning into an epidemic. They are just as deadly as the swine flu or TB. This affects all of us some how. It may be our spouse, parent or child. Even our finances, if you are sick you cannot go to work.
It also adds to the burden of our health care system like increases in our medical insurance premiums, lack of hospital beds, doctors and nurses. It also adds to the burden of the state when people sign up for free health care program.
We need to teach the people to get them making wiser choices like eating more fruits and vegetables versus cookies and burgers. Getting them to get off the couch and outside and start taking walks which by the way costs no money. In fact with better choices they will actually stat to save money which they spend on junk food, bad snacks, tobacco and alcohol.
It all starts with education. Some how we got to teach people what is good and healthy to eat versus what is bad and the consequences are. Not only people with lack of education are teaching their children the wrong lifestyle. We got to protect our children from these diseases. They learn by watching us and what we eat. We got to stop feeding them the junk and sweets or at least have a limit.
Children today spend far too much time indoors. You got to get them off the computer and to turn off the TV. Get them outside and playing in the yard. They need to exercise and they can do it just by running around.
Sometimes education in the schools will actually rub off on the parents at home. Schools are now spending time and money to teach children about proper diet and health issues. This in turn can influence the choices their parents make at the grocery store and where they decide to dine out and how often. But we cannot only depend on our schools and our children. We must educate the adults; make them aware of the problem the causes of them and the consequences. It should in the start in the home from the parents.