Health Matters Newsletter - August 2020
We all know the foundation for good health is simple - eat healthily and exercise.
But while we all know what to do, we don't always do what we know.
So should the government give us a push start on the way to better health?
In this month's Health Matters, Warren Matthews talks on the UK’s new "Better Health" Campaign. The idea behind it is simple: you can prevent many health problems by avoiding food out of packets and getting up off the sofa.
In other words, eat healthily and exercise.
It's common sense, and best of all, it's free. So what's stopping you?
I am celebrating my 73rd birthday today by doing this newsletter for August.
In a recent Wellness with Warren video, I talked about taking personal responsibility and COVID-19. I said, "I think much of the world's population is now beginning to realize that they cannot rely on the government or the medical system to protect them against these viruses". And if you can't rely on the government, then responsibility for your health is in your own hands...as it should be! Because we all know the foundation of good health is simple – eat healthily and exercise.
The problem, as I've said before, is that good health isn't something that just happens. Eating better and exercising more isn't something the government can do for us. But they can make it easier to push us in the right direction. Some governments seem to be waking up to the importance of prevention, whereas other governments tend to stick their head in the sand.
It looks like the UK government is perhaps waking up given the announcements from their PM Boris Johnson recently. Seems Boris is having a change of heart about the way he addresses the issue of diet. Back in 2006, he didn't seem to care too much about diet when he made headlines by supporting a group of mothers who were pushing fast food through railings to their little darlings because the school had banned unhealthy snacks. Boris took the position that people should eat what they like and so what's wrong with the Mum's pushing pies between the railings.
I concur that people should be able to eat whatever they want so long as it is not doing anyone else any harm but, that should be limited to adults. If they want to poison themselves that is their choice. The only problem is that it is generally the taxpayer who picks up the tab when they fall ill.
Anyway, back to Boris... he was one of the first senior political leaders to catch COVID-19 and end up in hospital seriously ill. Happily, he recovered, and it probably did him some good in that he seems to now have a better appreciation of the importance of prevention. And when I am saying prevention, I am not talking about just sticking a mask on your face. I am talking about strengthening your own body's ability to fight potential viruses or if you get it to recover with minimal damage as quickly as possible.
I am sure that the experience that Boris had with COVID-19 may have led to the launch of the new UK government "Better Health" campaign. This campaign is encouraging people to take better care of themselves. It includes new government initiatives such as banning TV advertisements for junk food before 9:00pm, ending buy-one-get-one-free deals on such food, and flagging calories on menus of large restaurants — and possibly on alcohol. It coincides with a report from Public Health England called Excess Weight and COVID-19, insights from new evidence. As the title suggests, the focus is on how people with excess weight are most at risk from COVID-19, which is understandable as many of these people have other underlying conditions such as diabetes type 2. The UK Government has said that a slimmer Britain would save the NHS £100 million over five years. That's a lot of money to save just by eating healthily and exercising - something we already know we should be doing.
Given that the overweight problem is even worse on a pro-rate basis in other countries, there is a lesson to be learnt here. Have a look at this chart which gives some interesting statistics. Actually, the UK doesn't look so bad in the overall context. Sadly the US is at the top, which is no doubt a factor in the COVID-19 fatality stakes. It was disappointing to see NZ worse than in the UK. The good news is that these conditions are all preventable if only everyone took responsibility for their own health. I understand that it is easier to say than do and it takes self-discipline but it can be done.
The starting point does not cost anything, it is free... avoid food out of a packet, try to eat less of it and exercise more. Try drinking a couple of large glasses of water 30 minutes before mealtime as that may help. I'd love to hear your thoughts about personal responsibility and exercise as part of your protection against COVID-19.
Oh...if you have been on Total Balance and our Omega 3 for some time your immune system should be looking pretty good. If you are not on these supplements and you want to give your immune system a quick boost, then it might be a good idea to have a look at our Immu-stay.
Talk again soon.
Wellness with Warren
Wellness with Warren is a weekly series of videos from Warren Matthews. It combines stories from his search for longevity - and the health and energy to enjoy it - with research based on verified facts. Please come and join Warren and be part of the collective journey to good health.
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