The health frenzy that’s been going around in social media and the web is relatively new. Youngsters in the UK and around the world are putting extra energy and attention to maintain a healthy lifestyle and stay fit.
Unfortunately for previous generations, being fit and healthy wasn’t exactly a fashion trend that they were eager to follow, and information about leading a healthy lifestyle wasn’t common news.
In the UK, smoking in enclosed public places and the workplace wasn’t banned until July 1st 2007. Even though the hazards of smoking and second-hand smoke have been well-known for decades.
On another note, statistics on alcoholism, overweight and mental health disorders are also on the rise. There’s still a lot of work to be done to reduce the number of drinks Britons drink a week, reduce the alarming number of alcoholics and improve health habits in British citizens. Mental health illnesses can also contribute to increasing the possibilities of suffering one or more of the illnesses mentioned below.
Even though mental health illnesses are not directly linked to these diseases its been reported that depression and anxiety, in particular, can greatly impact the health of our heart and decrease the proper functioning of the immune system, increasing the probabilities of suffering certain types of cancer.
Excessive drinking, eating the wrong food and a sedentary lifestyle are also big contributors to decreasing Britons’ health.
Which are the UK’s biggest killers?
- Coronary heart disease
This disease is responsible for causing 74,000 deaths each year in the UK. What’s surprising is that most deaths are occurring in folks under the age of 75. Coronary heart disease is an illness that can be preventable by following healthier habits and quitting some nasty addictions such as smoking.
Smoking, being overweight and having high blood pressure are some of the main factors that contribute to causing this disease.
- Respiratory diseases
One fact that is undeniable, is that the air that we breathe nowadays is not the same oxygen-rich air of the past. As the world gets more polluted every passing day, the air that we breathe becomes engulfed with toxic chemicals that harm our lungs and overall health.
However, there are other factors that can increase the possibilities of developing respiratory disease. The main two killers are asthma and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) this last one is an umbrella term that covers emphysema and chronic bronchitis.
Emphysema is mainly a smokers’ disease, however, in the case of COPD, it can also be the result of living in a polluted city and being exposed to toxic particles, whether in the environment or at the workplace.
Quitting smoking can be a great way to reduce the probabilities of suffering and dying from respiratory diseases.
Cancer numbers have been on the rise worldwide at an alarming rate. It is estimated that by the year 2030 three million people in the UK will have some form of cancer.
Thanks to medical innovations the survival rates are increasing, nevertheless, it’s still a fearsome disease that can take an emotional, physical and psychological toll on those suffering from it and for family members who become caregivers of their loved ones.
The UK still stands behind other European nations when it comes to cancer survival, which makes us think, what is the UK doing wrong?
- Liver disease
Chronic liver disease and cirrhosis in people under 65 years of age are increasing. Excessive alcohol consumption is the main reason behind these alarming statistics. Britons are being killed by their love for booze. Hitting a pub might be part of many Britons’ cultural habits, and a beer from time to time can even be beneficial for someone’s health, the problem comes when an occasional drink becomes an addiction that results in alcoholism and excessive drinking.
There needs to be an investment in prevention and education. These deaths can be preventable with self-control and moderation.
This painful disease positions itself as the third leading cause of death for Britons. More than 150,000 thousand people have a stroke in the UK every year, with 10,000 cases being preventable with education and healthier habits.
The chances of surviving a stroke increase significantly if those suffering one can detect the symptoms on time.
Some of the main symptoms to watch out for are facial weakness, speech problems, and weakness in one side of the body. The chances of recovery also increase with rapid treatment.
Another way to prevent suffering a stroke is quitting smoking, eating a healthier diet, decrease sugar consumption and alcohol.
How to Improve Your Health?
- Limit the number of alcoholic drinks you drink a week to three. Opt for a healthier alternative when going out, like non-alcoholic beer, or water with a twist of lemon.
You might feel like you need to take the edge off from life, work and family, which takes us to the next point.
- Get in the habit of having an exercise routine. Exercise has shown to be an effective anxiolytic and antidepressant, as well as reducing the levels of stress. Don’t just rely on exercise to take care of your mental health. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, unmotivated, stressed and hopeless, seek medical help. Psychotherapy and psychiatric medication have shown to be effective aids in treating different types of mental conditions. Your mental health is pivotal to maintaining an overall healthy body as well.
- Find effective medical help and strictly follow the medications that you need to take if you’re suffering from any illness that requires you to be on meds. You need to be disciplined when it comes to your medications and not wait until the illness goes away on its own. You can find great places serving UK customers with medical requirements.
- Don’t go on a temporary healthy diet to shed some pounds, instead turn a healthy diet into a lifestyle. It doesn’t mean you won’t eat cookies or ice-cream ever again, but when it comes to eating sugar and processed foods, do it in small amounts and once in a while.