Life is not a spectator sport. You must be well rested to take part.
Bear with me while I give you a little background here about how I find myself writing my first ever blog! Then I’ll get into the healthy living stuff…
Late last year I had the great honour of being named the Qantas Australian Woman of the Year in the UK by Australian Business in conjunction with Qantas and the Australian High Commission. As part of the nomination process, I was able to submit a short piece about why I would like to be Australian Woman of the Year.
In that piece I mentioned how I’d recently read an article in a woman’s magazine in which the author complained about spending £400 at the dentist to sort out a problem with her teeth. This was a magazine that advertised a pair of shoes for £850 and a handbag for £3000. Now, don’t get me wrong; I love a pair of inappropriate heels as much as the next woman. However, what I struggle with is the value placed on these material items; £400 to look after your health is considered excessive? But, £3000 for somewhere to carry your keys is not?
£400 to look after your health is considered excessive? But, £3000 for somewhere to carry your keys is not?
Unfortunately, health is not highly valued by many people in the UK. It is seen as a right, rather than a privilege, and definitely not something that people want to invest in; not just financially, but in time and effort too. In Australia, we are not perfect, but people recognise the need to engage in their own health. I grew up with Norm and the “Life.Be in it” programme (Google it if you haven’t a clue what I am talking about), where sensible eating and active lifestyles were promoted as essential components to good health. We have always advocated the importance of prevention in healthcare, with national campaigns such as “Slip, slop, slap” aimed at preventing skin cancer. You can read more about the importance of physical health in my blog here.
I wanted to be the Qantas Australian Woman of the Year to give me a platform to talk about the importance of physical activity in preventing many chronic diseases that are affecting people, especially women, from all sectors of society. I want to influence change in the public and private health sector by sharing my experiences in both the UK and Australia. By promoting Australian attitudes towards health and disease prevention, we can forge stronger links between the professions in both countries.