The directory of community and business organisations in Broadstone Dorset

Residents Association MagazinearrowWinter 2002- 1


Look to your health; and if you have it, praise God, and value it next to a good conscience; for health is the second blessing that we mortals are capable of a blessing that money cannot buy. (Izaak Walton).

How do we achieve and maintain this good health that Walton speaks of? There are so many books newspaper articles, magazines, television and radio programs regarding health matters that it seems pretentious to produce even more, but simple reminders are in my view not wasted.

When do we begin looking to our health? We hope that our Mothers start the process for us when we are in utero. Health in pregnancy, in infancy and early childhood have made such strides in the modern world we tend to forget that they are the basis of a healthy adult life.

Generally when we discuss "Health" as in this issue of our residents magazine we are thinking of adult health. So we are back to the standard issues of Weight, Exercise, Smoking, Sex, Alcohol, Drugs. For many of us the oft quoted sayings "a little of what you fancy does you good" or "everything in moderation" are guiding principles but modern evidence does not support them. Smoking for example is always bad for health and few would argue in favour. I subscribe to the view that drug taking is harmful and see no place for it in the life of someone trying to maintain good health. Alcohol raises many questions in any health discussion, not least what would society's view of it be if alcohol was being introduced for the first time in today's modem world. In the scope of this magazine I feel all we have space for is to recommend the levels of 21 units for a man and 14 units for a woman per week, one unit of alcohol being half a pint of traditional beer (modem strong lagers of 5% or more alcohol contain more than 1 unit per half pint), one 125ml glass of wine or a single measure of spirit. Weight and exercise seem to be the health issues that most frequently appear in conversation, print or film and local libraries, doctors surgeries, gymnasiums and health clubs can give sound guidance.

Several of the articles that follow address some of the issues associated with these topics but we accept that we are giving you but small reminders and encourage you to explore the wealth of material available to achieve that second blessing.

Ken Fleming

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