Recent research tells us that seven out of ten people believe that there is too much change these days and that we cannot keep up with the pace of technological change.
There can be little doubt that the silent killer of this century could be the technological revolution as people become concerned about the pace of change, health costs and develop a pessimistic view of the future.
The Risk of Chronic Diseases
Health risk behaviours are unhealthy behaviours we can change. Four of these health risk behaviours – lack of exercise or physical activity, poor nutrition, tobacco use, and drinking too much alcohol – cause much of the illness, suffering, and early death related to chronic diseases and conditions.
Chronic diseases are responsible for 9 out of 10 deaths each year and treating people with chronic diseases accounts for 86% of national health care costs. Conditions such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, obesity, and arthritis are among the most common, costly, and preventable of all health problems.
The Business Council of Australia has estimated that if chronic diseases were eliminated this could boost the productivity of the Australian economy by 10 per cent. The loss to the Australian labour force from chronic diseases is estimated to be 537,000 full-time people and 47,000 part-time people.
Sedentary Lifestyle Harm
Failure to recognise sedentary, inactive lifecycle costs include:
- Health costs: Physical activity helps prevent and manage over 20 health conditions and inadequate physical activity contributes to 1 in 10 early deaths
- Social costs: Communities with higher levels of physical activity have greater community cohesion and inclusion — the numbers of walked trips are declining
The burden of chronic diseases is 32 per cent higher for the most disadvantaged Australians (in the lowest 20 per cent of socio-economic status) than for the most advantaged Australians (in the highest 20 per cent of socio-economic status).
If we spend more than four hours at a time sitting, we are likely to live two years less than those who are more active.