It appears that the world has gone mad. We have lost all perspective and are panicking in the face of the coronavirus, that to date has claimed 3200+ lives worldwide (mostly in China) since first discovered. California declared a state of emergency after the death of one 71 year old man with underlying health issues. The US Congress has approved $8.3 billion in emergency aid to combat the virus.
Now, if that virus were claiming over 15 million lives a year for the past 15 years would you panic? Of course you would, and rightly so. That would be truly scary. Would you take dramatic action to protect against this terrible threat to life and to protect your children? Of course you would!
Let’s get a bit of perspective.
The number one killer, the number one destroyer of lives in the world bar none is heart disease, taking 15.2 million lives a year world-wide. It has been the number one killer for 15 years. What’s more, heart disease is mainly preventable through lifestyle measures: exercise, healthy diet, good sleep and reduced stress. All things we have in our control. Whereas it is very difficult to control the spread of the coronavirus, which in comparison, is an insignificant threat. The question isn’t why are we so scared of the coronavirus. The question is why aren’t we more scared of heart disease?
If we were to take this number one killer seriously, if we say we are committed to saving human lives, why aren’t we, in Greta Thurnberg style, taking more dramatic action to prevent this deadly killer of millions — heart disease?
Governments are willing to ban travel to prevent the spread of the coronavirus but aren’t willing to ban trans-fats? Why does margarine still exist, readily available on supermarket shelves? Why aren’t we all suddenly motivated to eat healthier meals, chomp down our veggies, take time to meditate, get a good night’s sleep and exercise daily? Why has the UK government decided it is okay to reduce the number of physical education (PE) classes in schools when childhood obesity is on the rise? I could understand this move if obesity in children were declining, but that isn’t the case. Why then? Lack of money, apparently. Schools are underfunded, so PE must be cut. But suddenly there is money for combating the coronavirus which doesn’t even rank when compared to the deadly heart disease.
Okay, what about tobacco?
Smoking causes 480,000 deaths per year in the USA (1,300 deaths per day) and 41,000 of those deaths were from secondhand smoke exposure. I don’t see California declaring a state of emergency and rushing in to seize those lethal cigarettes off supermarket shelves, even though non-smokers are dying at the rate of 41,000 a year from secondhand smoke. Compared to heart disease, smoking ranks fifth as the world’s deadliest killer.
Now for the good news. The same simple (not necessarily easy) steps it takes to prevent heart disease will also build your immunity. As a result, it is much easier to resist any infection or disease, including the coronavirus. So why worry about the coronavirus when you have a much greater chance of getting killed by heart disease or second hand smoke?
Here is a simple Life Hack to prevent early death from viruses:
Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for 20 seconds, sneeze/cough into a tissue (or your elbow, if necessary), eat your fruit and veggies, go for a nice walk and get plenty of sleep.
P.S. I am pleased to say that we’ve been encouraging and supporting people world-wide to live happier, less stressful and healthier lives for over twenty years now. If you can’t make these simple life changes on your own, consider getting some support. We are here to help.