Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Creating a Healthier World.


If you were to look at any statistics, the major causes of death and disability in North America would be the following:
  1. Cardiovascular Disease (accounts for approx. 39% of all deaths)
  2. Cancer (accounts for approx. 23% of all deaths)
  3. Chronic Respiratory Disease (accounta for approx. 5.1% of all deaths)

And it's no secret that cigarette smoking, improper dietary habits (and obesity), and inactive lifestyles contribute to these very large problems. In fact, a good portion of these lifestyle-related diseases can and should be prevented...as health maintenance is a

personal responsibility.

Being active all my life and having a career that helps individuals make more positive lifestyle choices (through physical fitness), leads me to think of ways to create a world where it would be easier to live more healthfully.

What could we possibly implement in this world of laziness?

Well how about these for starters:

  1. Tree climbing for physical education - appropriate and daily physical activity in the school system is still more a dream than a reality. There are far too many children that enter school happy, healthy, and fit from doing daily outdoor activities such as treeclimbing and playing tag AND leave 12 years later unfit and uninterested in their overall health.

  2. Showers, lockers, and covered bicycle parking in all office buildings - this would create more commuting cyclists and make the current ones happier. Employee-runners and employee-exercisers can squeeze in and share the showers with the cyclists, while they also could incorporate group classes to stay more motivated!

  3. No tax on selected sports and recreational equipment - currently there is no tax on books, so why not the same on sports equipment! A fit mind goes along with a fit body. Things such as bathing suits and bicycles go tax free. Golf clubs do too...if you don't ride a cart!

  4. Higher tax on 'zero' foods - there is a tax on alcohol and cigarettes...so let's do the same for non-nutritious food. And if the tax on alcohol or cigarettes tell us anything, this new tax won't get too many people to give up their favorite goodies but at least it will collect money from those that will suffer from obesity and require more medical attention down the road.

  5. Well leave - too many employees look to take 'sick leaves' where they get compensated for being unhealthy! It is those that are healthy, fit, and away from work less often (if not at all) that should be rewarded...if anyone is!

And you might think these ideas are unrealistic...and they are if you are thinking this. Why? Because the world is continuing to move in the complete opposite direction due to skeptics such as yourself, that don't think positively and help find solutions to the causes of the top three causes of death in North America.

We can continue to raise money for research, development and cures for these diseases OR we can be proactive and learn how to prevent them!

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