In 1987 there were 216 000 beds in NHS hospitals across the UK. Today there are just 87,000. In 1987 just 7% of the population were overweight, by 2030 nearly half the population will be. With obesity comes illnesses such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, strokes, joint problems and IBS. An increasing demand for NHS services is being met with a diminishing supply.
Just to be clear I think the NHS is wonderful. My experience of it to date (which has been limited) is one of staff so dedicated to the cause and so determined to make a difference under very extenuating circumstances. Yet as a service the NHS is heading to breaking point. Soon it will no longer be available to manage health issues that have essentially been created through years of misplaced responsibility.
As a wellness professional I consider it my duty to help as many people as possible understand that self care has to be the new health care. The body is an incredibly powerful machine, able to heal itself of most conditions if it is given the right nutrients over the right period of time. But 21st century life has lead us to confusion. What should or shouldn't I eat? What is fattening, what isn't? I don't have time to cook I am to busy!
Take IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) for example - a condition that is completely related to 21st century life and is absolutely avoidable if we understand how. Some people live with the pain of IBS for years and years. It is suggested that IBS is the second leading cause of absenteeism in the work place behind the common cold! How many millions are lost in the economy each year, and how much is IBS costing the NHS? It's all completely avoidable and the medical profession doesn't understand the solution other than to medicate (which doesn't solve it).
The time has come for us as a population to take back responsibility for own health. To recognize that the food we put in our mouths is the most powerful form of medication (or poison) available to us. Otherwise we will find ourselves lumbered with increasing health insurance policies, decreasing services to deal with problems, and daily disruption to our enjoyment of life. Being healthy is not complicated, nor is it time consuming despite what the marketing men tell us!
If you would like to know more on how you can implement self care strategies for your long term better health do get in touch. Or if you or anyone you know struggles with IBS why not tune into my next intestinal health webinar on Monday 19th Feb at 8pm.
You can register to be sent the webinar login details by clicking below.
Sue Thomas has been in the wellness industry for more than 16 years.