Sunday, December 6, 2009

What is health?

Health is generally defined as being "a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity" according to the World Health Organization (WHO). [1][2]

In 1986, the WHO, in the Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion, said that health is "a resource for everyday life, not the objective of living. Health is a positive concept emphasizing social and personal resources, as well as physical capacities." Classification systems such as the WHO Family of International Classifications (WHO-FIC), which is composed of the International Classification of Functioning, Disability, and Health (ICF) and the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) also define health.

Overall health is achieved through a combination of physical, mental, emotional, and social well-being, which, together is commonly referred to as the Health Triangle

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Aspects of health
Physical health
Main article: Physical fitness

Physical fitness refers to body health, and is the result of regular exercise, proper diet and nutrition, and proper rest for physical recovery.

This is also influenced by the standard of living and quality of life. Genetics also plays a major role in people's height. The study of human growth, its regulators, and implications is known as Auxology.
Mental health
Main article: Mental health

Mental health describes either a level of cognitive or emotional well-being or an absence of a mental disorder. The World Health Organization defines mental health as "a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community”.[3] However, despite official definitions, the term mental health, and the question of whether or not an individual is 'mentally well', remains a subjective assessment.
Determinants of health
Main article: Social determinants of health

The LaLonde report suggests that there are four general determinants of health including human biology, environment, lifestyle, and healthcare services.[4] Thus, health is maintained and improved not only through the advancement and application of health science, but also through the efforts and intelligent lifestyle choices of the individual and society.

A major environmental factor is water quality, especially for the health of infants and children in developing countries.[5]

Studies show that in developed countries, the lack of neighborhood recreational space that includes the natural environment leads to lower levels of neighborhood satisfaction and higher levels of obesity; therefore, lower overall well being.[6] Therefore, the positive psychological benefits of natural space in urban neighborhoods should be taken into account in public policy and land use