This year seems to have passed by so quickly. It is hard to believe that the holiday season is almost upon us. While many of us look forward to this time of year and its celebrations, for others it can be a stressful time. Women particularly feel the burden of Christmas preparations, usually doing the majority of present buying, decorating and food preparation for the day. It is also often women who negotiate between families on where they will spend Christmas day. This can be a source of much tension and can really put a dampener on what is supposed to be a happy time of year.
Where would we be without the internet? What did we do before we could order our groceries or a new pair of shoes online and have them delivered to our door? How did we trawl for objects that we didn't even know we wanted until we were outbid? While the internet has brought with it many advantages it also has its downsides, specifically in the way that it perpetuates misinformation.
In June, Australian women are encouraged to step back, take a close look how we live our lives and assess whether our health is in the red. Because not only is June the month in which the Heart Foundation launches their Go Red for Women campaign, which raises awareness about heart disease, it is also a time when Red Aussie Apple Day, the flagship event of Bowel Cancer Awareness Month, takes place.
A quarter of all Australian adults are obese and nearly two-thirds of us are overweight. The latest evidence shows that more and more often, we are replacing healthy foods with those that are high in energy but have little nutritional value. If current trends continue, it is estimated that by 2025 three-quarters of Australian women aged 20 years and older will be overweight or obese.
During the past 15 years, a lifestyle-disease epidemic has been sweeping across Australia. The number of people with chronic illnesses such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes and asthma is rising at an alarming rate. What is most concerning about this is that in many cases, these diseases could be avoided if we made healthier lifestyle choices on a day-to-day basis.
As we progress through life, our physical and mental health needs change.
While many of us see the value in safeguarding our physical wellbeing – and take steps to maintain a healthy weight, have regular health and skin check-ups, keep an eye on our blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol levels, and deal with illness or injury.
Two hundred women die of heart disease in Australia every week. That works out to be about 10,400 women each year and makes heart disease the leading cause of death for Australian women. Interestingly, only about one-third of us know this, despite the fact that nine in ten of us have at least one risk factor for the disease.
This first edition of Health Journey for 2012 focuses on nutrition and healthy eating. Often by this time of year our New Year's resolutions to eat better and exercise more have gone astray. We hope the articles on Japanese food, reading food labels and wholegrains help people to get back on track.
The rapid growth of social media has left many organisations struggling to keep up with what is on offer and determine how relevant these tools are for their circumstances. This is particularly the case for nonprofit organisations who often have limited information technology expertise and are typically underresourced.