The terms health, as used in today’s medical and scientific contexts, has become a bit vague. For example, the dictionary defines health as, “a condition of the body that signifies the prevention of diseases.” However, various definitions have been employed over the years for several different applications. Some use the term health care to mean the delivery of services aimed at maintaining health and others use the term health insurance to refer to healthcare provided by private or government organizations.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), health is a “state of full physical, mental and emotional well-being with no restrictions.” WHO also states that “health can be improved through prevention and early detection.” In order to achieve these goals, WHO suggests four strategies for achieving health: education, communication, community building and prevention and control. These strategies are further described as PH 3.0.
Education refers to communication of the facts about illnesses, the signs and symptoms and the general ideas and practices related to good health. This information is designed to give people the knowledge they need to make healthy choices and take necessary actions. An individual who is aware of his or her health status and the preventive measures it affords is better able to take charge of his or her health. The spread of contagious diseases could be prevented through early identification of illness as well as by taking on the proper responsibilities relating to personal hygiene.
Communication, meanwhile, involves the promotion of awareness, understanding, counseling and advocacy regarding health issues. It is also meant to provide information on how to prevent illnesses through the promotion of a healthy lifestyle and proper diet. By living a healthy lifestyle, an individual not only maintains a state of well-being, but also improves overall health. Proper nutrition encourages the prevention of many diseases. A good example of a healthful lifestyle is the one that promotes physical fitness.
Mental wellness refers to the capacity to deal with one’s emotional and mental experiences. It includes the capacity to get along with people, to concentrate, to be creative, to have patience and to solve problems. Mental wellness, however, does not pertain solely to emotional well-being; the other aspects of good mental health include the capacity to manage ones physical environment, to maintain proper body weight, to achieve optimal health and to learn new things and abilities. Maintaining a physically fit body is essential for people who wish to improve health. As a matter of fact, people who suffer from chronic illness or disability may benefit greatly from a physically active lifestyle.
Prevention of illnesses and injury reduces the risk factors of illness and injury. A physically active lifestyle, therefore, helps people to lower the risk factors of many illnesses and injuries. Some of the important risk factors of illness and injury include obesity, smoking, lack of exercise, lack of physical activity, and unhealthy lifestyle. Therefore, physical activity is an important strategy to improve health. The strategy can also prevent the development of certain health conditions like arthritis, heart disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis.