illnesses, both communicable and non-communicable. Infact, it is said that a good lifestyle wards off a large number of diseases and ensures a long and healthy life.
A little detail as shown below may help our understanding of lifestyle and how it affects our health.
By taste, we are referring to the ability to choose well, some persons have very poor taste while others have expensive/high taste or good taste. Those with expensive taste may do anything to meet their taste or spend on items that are not really needed but just to satisfy the taste while denying other needs such as school fees or medicare. Meeting one’s high taste may entail mixing or hanging out with persons whose lifestyle may deleteriously affect yours.
The Dictionary defines habit as something you do often; that you find hard to stop doing. Here we place alcohol intake, smoking, sleep habit, your diet, exercising, recreation etc. Alcohol intake and smoking of cigarette/cigars are associated with a lot of non-communicable diseases and a few communicable diseases.
Good nutrition comprising appropriate portions of carbohydrate, protein, fat, vegetables and fruits eliminates a lot of diseases.
Exercise is helpful in the management of diabetes and hypertension; it reduces the risk of cancer and obesity.
Attitude refers to the way you see other people, the way you relate to them, your perception of yourself, your perception of a situation, the way you feel about something; some persons think positively while others are always negative. Those who relate poorly with others or are negative about life are more likely to be stressed than those who do not. The effects are of stress are several beginning with sleeplessness.
Some people are extroverts while others are introverts, extroverts are less prone to stress and hence the diseases that come with stress.
Moral (right and wrong behavior) here refers to sexual behavior; those with loose morals tend to have multiple sexual partners including sex workers. Having multiple sexual partners increases the risk of sexually transmitted diseases such as Gonorrhea, Chlamydia, Syphilis, Herpes genitalis, HIV and Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) infection. All the infections mentioned have very many complications while some are associated with cancer.
5. Living standard
The standard of living has a lot of effect on your health; those with high standard of living are less prone to ill-health than those with low living standard. The former are assured of potable water, sanitary facilities, well ventilated homes, good food, proper medical care and good neighbourhood. The children are less likely to encounter gangs on the street and cultivate bad habits of doing drugs and consuming alcohol or being involved in street fights which could lead to death, maiming or imprisonment.
Values are societal beliefs; could be cultural or traditional beliefs, social or moral values; all these have affect on the health of a person. Some communities believe in female circumcision; this has a lot of health implications. Some persons do not believe in female education whereas education has a lot of effect on health. Some young men from a section of the country do not give much attention to education, they believe that it is easier to make it financially through business, their values are different; they do not want to go to school.
Illiteracy determines to a large extent your economic power and hence your standard of living; those who are uneducated are more likely to live in slums without potable water, sanitary facility and health care facility. Need I tell you the health implications?
Being fashionable is part of lifestyle but some fashion could harm your health. High heel shoes could lead to bunions, foot/ankle arthritis and back pain; very flat slip-on foot wears increase the risk of injuries to the feet and pain in the calf muscles. Tight jeans in men can affect the functions of the testes and fungal infections in the groin; ditto for tight under wears for men.
It is now a fashion for women to carry heavy hand bags containing all sorts of things they do not really need, hanging them on their shoulders; these heavy bags can cause back and neck pain and if the strap is thin, can leave a depression on the skin.
The health implications of tattoos and body piercing are well known; tanning mostly by women increases the risk of cancer of the skin.
It is now also fashionable for women to wear tight-fitting underwear and thong underwear, both types can increase the risk of urinary tract infection and fungal infection in the groin. In addition, thong underwear can cause skin cuts/injuries.
While it is good to be fashionable, you must be conscious of the possible health implications.