THE OTHER RISK FACTORS:
What Blood Pressure, Cholesterol & Weight Don’t Tell You About Health
Health traditionally is defined by biomedical markers such as cholesterol, blood pressure, weight, etc. But how much of our morbidity, mortality and particularly our quality of life really are explained by these traditional risk factors? The literature strongly supports that emotional, social and spiritual factors play essential roles in determining both our resistance to disease and our ability to heal ourselves. Yet clinical, community and worksite approaches to health education and promotion remain narrowly focused on a biomedical, mechanistic model that emphasizes traditional risk factors for disease. This presentation challenges participants to re-think the traditional focus of health promotion programs as well as their own personal philosophies of health. The presentation will explore the growing body of research that establishes strong relationships between health and optimism, purpose and meaning in life, connectedness, perceived health and happiness, touch, prayer, spirituality, etc. Implications of this new information for helping professionals will be discussed.