I think it is fair to say that in an affluent, Western country we have access to some of the best healthcare money can buy, but recently a certain thought has been playing on my mind; the paradox of healthcare between first and third-world countries. The thing is that in the Western world scientists spend billions of dollars every year trying to find cures for very complicated and difficult to cure diseases. Whilst all of these diseases are horrible, and a cure would be amazing, we must consider the sad truth that a lot of our poor health is as a result of poor lifestyle choices. The biggest killers, being heart disease, cancer and diabetes, are all strongly linked to poor choices in diet and lack of exercise. I personally find it very sad that people spend so much money on products and food that is SO bad for them and make bad choices such as smoking, drinking in excess and not exercising, then when they end up with one or a number of these diseases as a result our healthcare system must spend even more money trying to put these people back together again. Let me take a moment to consider how different healthcare would be if everyone actually took CARE of their own HEALTH. If every person for example in Australia, or America, chose to eat a healthy, clean diet and exercise frequently, if they chose not to smoke and drank plenty of water, imagine how different our society would be. Obesity, heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, strokes and even cancer would become a thing of the past, not obsolete but it wouldn’t kill the thousands it does now and we wouldn’t have to inject billions of dollars from tax revenue into trying to find a quick-fix for poor health.
Now imagine for a moment all the millions of starving people in the world, who’s health problems beyond simple to fix, FEED THEM!!! I feel terrible for all of these malnourished people who must live and die with reality that in other parts of the world, where wealth is high, people gorge themselves and eat more than their fair share of food and create diseases that are difficult to cure. These people don’t deserve to starve to death when food is plentiful in our shopping malls and cities, these people don’t deserve to be deprived of cheap and simple vaccines that will save their lives all because we are spending that money on research and people who made themselves sick, these people don’t deserve to be ignored simply because they were born into an unfortunate situation and they certainly don’t deserve to die because of our own selfish, ignorant and inconsiderate nature. As much as it pains me to live in the knowledge that this occurs every day in places such as Asia and Africa, I don’t ignore the fact that we are killing ourselves while others die of starvation. And for that reason I chose to share this truth with you, so that hopefully we, as people who have the choice, will make the right choice. You might not have money or time to give to the charities or to physically help these people, but the choices you make about your health can at least lessen the chance that you become sick with these preventable diseases.
Please, I urge you all, make the right choices about your health. It is not only fantastic for you, but it will touch the lives of others in ways you cannot imagine.