Good health is much more than eating right, exercising regularly and going to
the doctor. To be healthy, we have to balance all aspects of our lives -
physical, social, mental, economic and spiritual. These complex factors all work
together to determine our state of health and well-being.
To get the best out of life, start by making your health a priority. Not just
your physical health, but all the factors that make your life satisfying and
fulfilling. Try to find the balance that works for you and take action when that
balance tips too far in one direction or another.
Risk factors for chronic disease
Chronic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes and cancer, are the leading
causes of death and disability in North America. Usually, chronic diseases are
caused by a combination of factors. However, there is clear evidence that
certain lifestyle choices can increase your risk of developing a serious
disease. These lifestyle choices include:
|o||a major risk factor for cancer,
respiratory diseases and cardiovascular (heart) disease
|o||associated with high blood pressure,
increased the risk of heart attack, type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis
|o||leads to obesity, which increases the
risk of high cholesterol, high blood pressure, cancer and type 2 diabetes
Stress is another factor that has been linked to chronic disease. Repeated
stress may trigger a physical response that can compromise your immune system
and may lead to depression, heart attack or stroke.
Following healthy habits
If you take an active role in managing your health and keeping stress to a
minimum, you'll be healthier and perform better at work and at home. Get off to
a good start by following these steps:
|•||Set your priorities -
It can be challenging to balance your work, family life and health needs.
Start by making a list of the things that are important in your life. Review
the list and identify the highest priorities - then find time for them in
your busy schedule.
|•||Simplify your life
- Reduce stress by delegating tasks or eliminating obligations that you
don't enjoy. Focus on one thing at a time and try not to take work problems
home with you.
|•||Maintain a healthy
lifestyle - Regular exercise is good for your body and mind. Not
only does it strengthen muscle and bone, but it also relieves tension and
stress. Healthy eating keeps your energy levels high, even on the most
demanding days. And make a point of going to bed early. Sleep helps you
handle the responsibilities of every day with more strength and focus.
|•||Take time to renew
and revitalize - If you let yourself get run down, you won't be
effective at work or at home. Remember that your most important resource is
- you! Take time to take care of yourself.
|•||Build a strong
support network - Family and friends can be a powerful resource
during challenging times. Spend more time with the people you love and
trust. And establish open and honest relationships with your colleagues and
supervisors at work.
workplace wellness programs- The Peel board is committed to
workplace wellness. There are several employee assistance programs available
to help you deal with personal problems, health issues or stressful
For more information, visit the Employee Assistance Program
and the Wellness Programs pages of this website.
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How healthy are you? Do you recognize the signs of chronic disease?
Take this quiz and do your own health check!
Good health is combination of many factors. The Take One Step website offers practical and useful information about all aspects of healthy living. Follow these links to find out more:
Learn to recognize the five signs of chronic stress.