Monday, January 30, 2012

May You Live a Long Happy Life

None of us is going to live forever, but most of us would like to live long healthy lives.

Unfortunately, in the ongoing debate about health care our politicians obsess about health insurance, not health.

We are being led to believe that the road to good health involves becoming a consumer of health care.

But, pursuing and consuming health care is not a formula for a long healthy life.

Among the unintended consequences of this debate is that the nation is being consumed by a generalized anxiety about getting sick. How much does this anxiety improve your health?

We all know that good habits advance good health. Being anxious and stressed about getting sick is not a good habit.

Today I want to share a checklist of good habits that will help you to live a long life in good health. Link here.

Happily, from my perspective, many of these habits are counterintuitive. They are exactly the opposite of what the culture is telling you.

Turn on the television and you will be told that the meaning of life is having fun, especially on vacation.

So, it’s striking that the first item on the list is: Don’t retire.

The evidence suggests that retirement is bad for your health. Lounging around the pool, relaxing at the bar, getting up when you please… all of it will probably make you sick.

The second item on the list is something that your dentist has told you more times than you care to remember: Floss every day.

When it comes to your teeth, the culture has made a fetish out of teeth that look like chiclets. People are consuming teeth whitening products in massive quantities. They thrill to porcelain veneers. They are looking to flash the perfect smile.

None of that is going to improve your general overall health as much as flossing. If you don’t believe me, ask your dentist.

So, now that we are well into the Year of the Dragon, allow me to wish you the courage and fortitude necessary to develop the good habits that will make you consume less medical care and live a longer happier life.

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