BBC Science

Healthy LifeHealth professionals, policy makers and individuals can potentially improve the chances of having a healthier life by addressing the complex interactions between genetics, development, and life events and lifestyles. Meatless Monday is an international movement to help people reduce their meat consumption by 15%. On average, Americans consume 8 ounces of meat per day — 45% more than the USDA recommends. Going meatless one day a week can reduce the risk of chronic preventable conditions like cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity. It can also help limit people’s carbon footprint and save precious resources like fresh water and fossil fuel. Check out featured meatless options at FFC and Nolan’s.

Average life expectancy and healthy life expectancy are both important headline measures of the health status of the population. The healthy life expectancy measure adds a ‘quality of life’ dimension to estimates of life expectancy by dividing it into time spent in different states of health. The number of years of life in poor health is also important as it relates more closely to the demand for health and social care and the associated costs.

Keep track of your symptoms using a journal or DBSA’s mood calendar mentioned above in the Reducing Stress section. Learn to recognize patterns and combinations of symptoms that may indicate that you are or may soon be having a manic or depressive episode. Inform your health care provider and loved ones when you feel your symptoms increasing and ask them to observe your behavior.

The idea that what a person eats influences their health no doubt predates any historical accounts that remain today. But, as is often the case for any scientific discipline, the first detailed accounts come from Ancient Greece. Hippocrates, one of the first physicians to claim diseases were natural and not supernatural, observed that many ailments were associated with gluttony; obese Greeks tended to die younger than slim Greeks, that was clear and written down on papyrus.

Kate Lorig, RN, DrPH, is a director and associate professor at the Stanford University School of Medicine’s Patient Education Research Center. She lives in Mountain View, California. Halsted Holman, MD, is professor of medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine. He lives in Stanford, California. David Sobel, MD, is the director of patient education and health promotion at the Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program in Northern California. He lives in San Jose, California. Diana Laurent, MPH, is a health educator at the Stanford University School of Medicine’s Patient Education Research Center. She lives in Palo Alto, California. Virginia Gonzalez, MPH, is a health educator at the Stanford University School of Medicine’s Patient Education Research Center. She lives in San Jose, California. Marion Minor, PT, PhD, is an assistant professor at the University of Missouri in the department of physical therapy. She lives in Columbia, Missouri.