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"The main thing is this programme has given me the hope that I can continue working for a lot longer than I thought would be possible and has given me a better quality of life than I had previously. " Jayne Beresford

Personal Health Check List

About This Checklist

The link between increased fitness and a reduction in a likelihood of a number of physiological conditions, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol level, certain forms of cancer and obesity is now accepted. For some time there has been a feeling that there are positive benefits in a psychological sense too, but there is less research to back this up.

In the early nineties the International Society of Sports Psychologists agreed with America’s National Institute of Mental Health. They stated that they believed specific conditions such as anxiety, stress and depression, could be alleviated by taking regular exercise. Those suffering from depression tended to lead a more sedentary lifestyle, and in studies of patients with this condition they have reported the exercise part of their treatment programmes to be the most significant element in alleviating symptoms.

As an important element of self-esteem, working hard to get our bodies in shape is almost like a reward in itself. Any physical changes we may see over time; loss of weight, building of muscle, toning our bodies etc. will add to this, as these are generally recognised as attractiveness.

Exercise and a healthy balanced diet are good for us

We are more likely to stick to a regime if we plan it and have the necessary knowledge.

Work is life – work and life are inextricably linked, we have a duty to make them both harmonious

Absenteeism through stress is a factor which is much talked about, perhaps because it is tangible and can be measured. What is more insidious and tougher to track is presenteeism. Workers who display this trait are at work, despite not being fully fit, they may be suffering the effects of stress, but continue to show up each day. This state of being in work, but not up to full capacity due to poor health, was named presenteeism by Hemp (2004), who went on to speculate the cost of this phenomenon could well be in excess of absenteeism.

Stress factors at work

There is a moral case for stress reduction. Beyond simple good ethics there is a financial case too – stress is costly. There is a direct positive link between happy workers and productivity.

The overall weight of evidence points towards a need to proactively embrace wellbeing

Working hard is what makes many of us tick. Taking care of ones’ wellbeing requires providing ourselves with a little time to plan. Nothing ever got done that wasn’t planned for. For action for positive change to take place we have to ‘decide it’, ‘schedule it’, ‘do it’ and ‘record it’.

The future you

Fast forward through your life and imagine what it is going to be like when you look back. If you use this technique to visualise different outcomes, it may change the way you live your life now.
It is here where wellbeing behaviours can play their part. By doing the right things regularly and relentlessly, the studies show we can increase our chances of being healthier and therefore happier.

Knowledge is power – know where you are now and where you need to be by using the checklist below:

Body Mass Index Healthy weight = 18.5–24.9
Resting Heart Rate Healthy for women 70-80 beats per minute and for men 50–60 beats per minute.
Cholesterol Healthy for men 5.0 and for women 5.6 although this is disputed amongst the medical profession. In the UK we have one of the highest cholesterol levels globally.
Blood Pressure Ideal range is between 90 over 60 and 120 over 80.
Sugar Levels Normal blood sugar level is 4 - 7 mmol/l before a meal and less than 10 mmol/l after one and half hours following a meal.
Alcohol Intake 14 units per week for both men and women spread over at least 3 days with 2 consecutive alcohol free days
One unit is considered to be 8g of alcohol, or equivalent to:
§ Half a pint of standard strength (3.5% AVB) beer, cider or lager
§ A pub measure of spirit
§ Half a standard glass (175ml) of wine
§ A pub measure of sherry, vermouth or liqueur
Sleep Quality 7 – 10 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night depending upon the individuals requirements.
Existing Injuries Take appropriate steps to minimise discomfort and promote healing.
Exercise NHS recommended activity levels – for adults, 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity at least five days a week.
Diet A balanced diet containing lean protein, complex carbohydrates, at least 5 servings of vegetables and fruit per day increasing to 12 to 15 daily servings to reduce the risk of certain cancers and diseases.


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