Blue Zones and Health Habits — Period Two (Hailee, Harris, and Mack)

Here is your homework for tonight: Listen/watch the following two reports, and take notes on what you see and hear.

(Note: earlier today the link to the streaming video of Margaret Warner’s Russia report was broken. I contacted PBS NewsHour Extra about the problem, and maybe it will fixed by the time you go to it. If not, then listen to the audio, and follow along with the transcript provided — the article).

In Russia, Unhealthy Habits Make Funerals Outpace Births

Southern Women Living Shorter Lives

After watching and listening, post a comment below wherein you respond to one or more of the questions listed below.

Questions for Reflection:
Why are these people considered to be ‘unhealthy?’ What can be done to create more healthy options for them? Are the individuals themselves responsible for all changes that need to be made to move their lifestyle in a healthier direction? What else needs to happen? What are the economic forces affecting their choices?

In the NewsHour report, Margaret Warner points to the powerful social and cultural attitudes that have deeply ingrained high levels of alcohol and tobacco consumption in Russian life. The Russian Minister of Health and Social Development, Tatiana Golikova points to a long history of men’s reluctance to seek medical attention. What attitudes or beliefs do we hold that prevent us from making healthy choices? Why might someone feel unable or unwilling to access medical care? What role does the media play in shaping these attitudes?

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2 thoughts on “Blue Zones and Health Habits — Period Two (Hailee, Harris, and Mack)

  1. In my opinion, people today are being considered “unhealthy” because of the high growing rates of diseases. These diseases are direct results from the bad habits people have. Obesity, for example, is cause by a convenience of fast, cheap food and lack of exercise. I do not think that promoting is the only answer. Awareness to this issue is not the problem, but rather the availability to healthy food and places to exercise. It is easier to drive to McDonalds and order a dollar cheeseburger than to find the healthier choices that maybe be more expensive. Also it does not help that Americans are lazy. A possible solution could be lowering the costs of certain foods needed to sustain a healthy diet. On the other hand you do not want to take profit out of a company. On the issues of the other diseases like lung cancer and other organ affecting diseases, it is due to tobacco and smoking. The whole basis behind cigarettes and any other tobacco products is to use nicotine to induce an addiction. This leads to the need of these products. Smoking is the number one cause for lung cancer in America and is a growing problem. With the many advertisements and promotions of tobacco products, Americans fell okay with using these. Solutions to this problem could include, higher taxes on tobacco products and even alcoholic products

  2. People are considered unhealthy if they smoke or are obese and this is true. I think that in school starting at a young age children should be educated on the long term health problems associated with smoking and fast food. You can not blame fast food companies and tobacco companies for these health problems. If a person really cares about their health and knows what is good and what is bad than they will make a choice not to smoke or drive the extra 10 minutes and pay the extra dollar to stay healthy. The responsibility falls completely on the individual. Dr. Murray thinks that there has to be better primary care for individuals with high blood pressure. That is not a solution to this problem that only masks it. The best solution is raising public awareness. If the government puts higher taxes on tobacco which they already have done than they better put that money into PSA’s that raise awareness to the issue.

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