IT’S A MATTER OF STAYING FIT AND HEALTHY

Diagnosis of the “world’s” health is not very encouraging. Health news is inundated with disturbing figures and development of unhealthy trends and ill-lifestyles the world over. Major killers such as cancer and cardio diseases are on the rise while causes are numerous. Foremost, blame is cast upon the modern lifestyles and sedentary lifestyle remains a major part of ill-lifestyles.  

According to WHO, worldwide cancer cases are expected to rise by 57% in the next 2 decades. An estimated 14 million people get cancer every year with mortality numbering around 8.2 million. This is expected to reach 22 million a year and mortality increasing to 13 million in 20 years’ time. It can be argued that rise would be in tandem with population growth but that is only partially true because the world’s population would not increase 57% in 20 years. Partly too, this could be attributed to the growing aging population. Hence, focus is on lessening this burden which cost economies US$ 1.6 trillion and rising, a year.

Since lung cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer, a very hard look would be on combatting smoking. However, regular exercise stays at the top of the list of preventions and efforts to promote healthy lifestyle through exercise and diet takes centre stage. There can be no shortcuts as far as regular exercise is concern and your body will protest loudly when neglected. The reason is simple and it’s because your body has been designed and made to be mobile. Immobility therefore is a direct contravention and the price you pay would be by way of suffering and risking your precious life.

Heart disease is also a predominant killer. There are many causes to heart diseases which include heredity but ultimately, it boils down to what you do for your body cum heart and your diet. The “C” word is not only confined to cancer but can be applied to cholesterol as well. Here are other latest findings. Heart disease risks affliction of dementia, especially for older women, and by an alarming rate of almost 30%.  The Journal of the American Heart Association published some studies on this. A research affecting 6,500 women discovered that older women with heart disease have increased risks of dementia and overall mental decline. Risk is doubled for women who have suffered heart attacks. Therefore women who’ve had bypass surgery, atrial fibrillation, peripheral vascular disease and carotid endarterectomy should be regularly monitored their doctors. Besides this, high blood pressure and diabetes also have increased mental decline risks.

BMI or body mass index is also a focus on studies. Duke Medicine in the United States reported on a recent research. Lead author Truls Ostbye, MD, PhD, (Professor of Community and Family Medicine) surmised: “our findings suggest that excess fat is detrimental at any level”. In a nutshell, healthcare costs increase gradually and in tandem with each unit of increase to BMI. This begins from a normal BMI of 19. As an indication, a 5’ 4” woman weighing 115 pounds has a BMI of 19+ but a woman of the same height weighing 187 pounds will have a BMI of 32+.

It’s fair to say that not everybody who exercises regularly would be totally sure of staving off cancer and heart disease. But will do wonders for your BMI though which is an indicator or precursor of ills to come. Nevertheless, one would be able to reduce unnecessary or surmountable risks. As they say one thing leads to another and sedentary lifestyle is the doorway for ill-health to affect you. Inactivity causes your BMI to increase since fat start to accumulate in you and from there, begins a downward slide to your wellbeing.

So since we are well into the Year of the Horse, one might rekindle on the old adage that “you and pull your horse to the water but you can’t force it to drink”. Make a positive change to your life today.