The Rise of Chronic disease and what to do about it
Do you have any Nastie Oudours in your life ?
I don’t mean to ask a blunt personal question but this is important. We as a species have a little of bit of a problem here.
For the the time in human history we are getting sicker than previous generations.
Life expectancy in the US is now falling with life expectancy now down to 78.6 and falling each year its measured from 2016 ( 1). And even here in Japan, a country that is used to pride itself on how its population seemed to live forever is seeing a decline in its longevity with the average male now living 83.98 years (3) but this is no longer the worlds leading figures (2).
This is even more perplexing when you consider just how amazing some of the recent medical advances in the last few decades have been. We have seen the rise of HIV managed very well with antiretroviral drugs, artificial hearts, Hep C can be cured in some cases. Keyhole surgery and increased sophistication of some anti cancer drugs.
Yet even these can’t quite manage to keep us living any longer.
So what does this have to do with Nasty odours ?
Well the reason we are getting sicker is the change from people dying from Acute diseases such as infections, Workplace accidents, Tuberculosis etc to people dying from Chronic disease such as Diabetes, Obesity and Cancers.
The ” sweet spot ” between decreasing Acute and increasing Chronic Disease.
Australia has some of the worlds leading researchers into this problem such as Professor Gary Egger and what they are have brought up is the concept of ” Anthropogens“.
Most of of our theories about why we get sick are based on middle ages discovery and 19th century concept of Germ Theory ( 4). This basically states that a pathogen like a virus or bacteria gets into our systems and makes us sick.The founders of lifestyle medicine propose a new term ” Anthropogens ” which can be defined as ” man made environments that can be detrimental to human health ” (5)
That’s right.Humans themselves are making our environment around us unhealthy.
How are we doing this ?
If you add together all things we are doing as a species to make ourselves chronically ill you come up with the acronym Nasty Malodours.
See the graph below
This is really important work.
What modern researchers are finding is that things like relationship problems and poor sleep can be just as bad for your health as viruses and bacteria. In fact the components of Chronic diseases are now winning the battle for making our lives shorter and less enjoyable.
So what can we do ?
It’s worth having a think about your own situation and the Nasty odours in your life.
What factors have chosen to that you think may be contributing to own chronic disease risk ? Take the time once a month to give yourself and honest self audit of your situation.
- Is your weight an issue ? That’s a very important area and one that affects many aspects of your life
- Are you getting enough sleep ?
- Are you living work or working to live, does your life give you a sense of purpose ?
- Do you spend too much time on your mobile phone ?
- Are you eating poorly ?
- Are you getting enough sunlight ? This can be challenge for those of us working in Niseko over the winter months.
If you take the time to address the Nasty odours in your life you stand a much better chance of not just living longer but living better for longer as well.