BEYOND DIET AND EXERCISE: EXPLORING THE SOCIAL DETERMINANTS OF HEALTH
There is a constant onslaught of reminders about the necessity of eating well and being active, but there is much more to health than these two things. In fact, a wide range of socioeconomic variables can have a major effect on our health results.
So, what exactly are social determinants of health? Simply said, the circumstances in which we are born, grow, live, work, and age can have an impact on our health and well-being. These determinants are influenced by a variety of factors, including our socioeconomic status, education level, race, ethnicity, gender, and other aspects of our identity.
Let's explore some of the key social determinants of health in more detail:
1.WEALTH AND INCOME
Two of the most important social determinants of health are income and wealth. People with higher salaries and affluence have better health outcomes because they have more access to healthcare, nicer housing, and healthier dietary options. Those with lesser wages and less wealth are more likely to suffer from health issues, such as chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart disease.
Another key social factor of health is education. greater educated people have better health outcomes because they are more likely to have secure jobs with benefits and greater salaries. They are also more likely to make healthier choices, such as routinely exercising and consuming a nutritious diet.
3. RACE AND ETHNICITY
Race and ethnicity can have an impact on health outcomes as well. People of color are more prone to encounter health disparities in many nations, such as greater rates of chronic disease, poorer life expectancy, and lower healthcare quality. These discrepancies are frequently tied to institutional racism, which can affect everything from job chances to healthcare access.
4. SOCIAL ASSISTANCE
Social support is essential for general health and well-being. People who have strong social networks have better mental health, lower stress levels, and better physical health results. In contrast, social isolation can result in a variety of poor health effects, including despair and anxiety.
Another key social factor of health is gender. Women outlive males, but they confront specific health obstacles, such as reproductive health issues and greater prevalence of certain diseases. Transgender people experience considerable health inequities, including high rates of mental illness and difficulty accessing treatment.
These are only a few of the social determinants of health that can have an impact on our health and well-being. It is critical to recognize that our health is influenced by a complicated web of circumstances, and that tackling these determinants necessitates a multidimensional strategy. By addressing the social determinants of health, we hope to create a world in which everyone has the opportunity to live a healthy and satisfying life.