Results Summary

  • Your Overall Wellbeing Score Is Critically Low

    The results below also indicate a critically low level of wellbeing, a lower resistance to physical illness and lengthier recovery times after illness. This reflects your reduced energy levels. It leaves you feeling generally unhappy with life with an increased risk of mental illness. It lowers your resistance to physical illness and can lengthen recovery times after illness.
    It also increases the likelihood of your quality of life falling prematurely below an acceptable level in old age with the risk of dementia and physical frailty. You should look at the poor areas of your lifestyle identified and determine what changes can be made to improve your wellbeing.

  • Your Wellbeing

    Action Planning: Small changes

    Making a small but achievable lifestyle changes produces a major effect on overall wellbeing. Areas in need of attention include:

    Physical Health:
    Diet
    Sleep
    Social Health:
    Work / Life
    Mental Health:
    Attitude
    Financial
  • Your Wellbeing

    Health Risk - How it Works:
    The Biopsychosocial (BPS) Model
    of health and illness.

    "In 1977 American psychiatrist George Engel introduced the major theory in medicine, the BPS Model. The model accounted for biological, psychological and sociological interconnected spectrums, each as systems of the body. In fact, the model accompanied a dramatic shift in focus from disease to health, recognizing that psychosocial factors (e.g. beliefs, relationships, stress) greatly impact on both onset of illness as well as recovery, the progression of and recuperation from sickness and disease."

    Source: Dr Shaheen E Lakhan

  • Your Current Age is:
    Quality of Life Will Deteriorate at:
    With Lifestyle Changes this could be:
    49
    65
    80
    * Accurate Predictions can only be made for those over 45 years old.
  • Your Heart Disease Risk Is Critically High

    Changes in lifestyle behaviour plus medical intervention can also help through appropriate prescriptions to control some of these risk factors. Some recent studies have shown that by combining lifestyle change with drug therapy even greater improvements can be made than using either drugs or lifestyle changes alone. If you have not already done so you should consult with your doctor or pharmacist on the best ways of controlling your risk.
    Look at the poor areas of your lifestyle identified and determine what changes can be made to improve your wellbeing.

  • Your Premature Ageing Risk Is Extremely Low

    Your current lifestyle places you at an extremely low risk of losing quality of life prematurely in later life.
    Premature ageing is one of the greatest challenges we face. One of the main challenges of ageing is maintaining quality of life. Recent breakthroughs have demonstrated that it is possible to have both a long life but just as importantly maintain the quality combined with the absence of age-related disease. Encouraging research has shown that by timely adoption of appropriate lifestyle patterns, quality of life is capable of being sustained for much longer.

Lifestyle Behaviour

  • Your Attitude Is Very Negative
  • For your long term wellbeing it is essential you try to establish positive thinking patterns and generally adopt a more positive attitude. You should consider seeking professional advice and help. Once in this state it can be extremely difficult without such help. This level of negative attitude could be a strong influence in contributing to increased level of dementia earlier in old age.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • When pressure builds we are more inclined to take a negative view on life. As a result the body produces more stress hormones such as adrenalines and cortisols.

      If sustained this can lead to tiredness, depression, anxiety and even sometimes lead to mental illness.

      While the buzz of adrenaline can make life more enjoyable, it is equally important to have the capacity to switch off.

      • Sustained negative thinking can lead to psychological disorders.
      • Everyone is susceptible to this risk.
      • Deterioration in mental wellbeing and mental illnesses are just as common in capable, able, tough individuals and can affect virtually anyone.
    • Control of stress is essential for health. Understanding this process, controlling it and influencing it is essential for our mental wellbeing.

      Positive attitudes interpret life events optimistically, reinforcing what we do, building up self-esteem and self-value.

      Negative attitudes interpret life events pessimistically, undermining self-esteem and reducing confidence. There are important lifestyle skills that we can learn and develop to maintain a positive attitudes.

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  • Your Exercise Levels Are Reasonable
  • Your current activity levels are reasonable. You should take care to maintain or even slightly increase your activity levels in order to help sustain a good level of wellbeing as well as reducing the threat to frailty and physical incapacity in old age. You need to consider ways of increasing your activity levels.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • One of the main positive influences on body maintenance comes from physical activity.

      Physical action imposes a load on muscles causing a degree of breakdown. This results in muscles being weaker after exercise.

      This breakdown in turn stimulates the body to produce repair hormones, called anabolic hormones such as growth hormone, testosterone and oestrogen.

      • Repair hormones are produced mostly during deep sleep and repair not muscles but also bone, skin, blood cells, the immune system and all tissues. This is the training effect.
      • Anabolic hormone production is stimulated by exercise and as a result also slows the effects of ageing.
    • Getting fitter does take time and effort, but a great deal can be achieved by making small changes to increase activity. For example:

      • Walking whenever possible.
      • Climbing stairs rather than taking the lift.
      • Cycling to work or for recreation.
      • Swimming at the local pool.
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  • Your Social Interaction Patterns Are Reasonable
  • To help improve your quality of life both now and in the long term it is important to try and improve your levels of social interaction. We do not get friendship "for free". It needs to be worked on and commitments made.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Family and friends generally provide the social network that maintains you. For many people problems occur when their efforts do not match their values.

      If for example, you value your loved ones but take them for granted, this is often a cause of relationship problems.

      It is often not lack of time that causes problems with a relationship; it is the quality of the time shared together.

      Many at work are full of energy and drive, and return home tired, irritable, and defensive.

      • Strong support networks provide our strongest coping strategies when dealing with stress.
      • Positive social interaction is reflected in profound positive responses from our hormonal system.
      • We respond by producing feel good hormones that increase our feelings of wellbeing and ability to cope with life's pressures.
    • Those with good social networks have better levels of wellbeing, cope better with life's inevitable setbacks and this contributes to improved levels of overall wellbeing and health.

      In many cases redressing the work / life balance is key to renewing and maintaining strong social networks.

      Even as a minimum, getting home early just one evening a fortnight with a planned, family focused agenda can make a great deal of difference.

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  • Your Sleep Patterns Are Extremely Poor
  • To help improve your quality of life both now and in the long term it is important to try and improve your sleep hygiene.
    Before the advent of artificial light, i.e. gas and electric lighting, the working day was largely determined by sunlight and day length and there was usually more than adequate time to sleep. In modern society the length of the working day is often self determined, and sleep may now be seen as an inconvenience and its time restricted.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Human beings have an individual, genetically determined required amount of sleep that is not necessarily the magic 8 hours. Some people may require as little as 4 hours while others need a regular 10 hours to feel refreshed, and able to function well during the day.

      Too little sleep and we become sleep deprived. Too much, and sleep becomes stretched and fragmented.

      Maintenance of a regular bedtime and get-up time helps to consolidate sleep and keep the body clock synchronised.

      If you feel you need to sleep longer at weekends (or non-workdays) this is likely to indicate insufficient sleep during weekdays (or workdays)..

      • It is during deep sleep that the body's main repair hormones are produced.
      • Broken sleep inhibits body repair by supressing repair hormone production, in effect speeding up the ageing process.
      • Milk contains tryptophan which helps sleep.
      • The timing and content of meals significantly influences sleep patterns.
    • Avoid eating your main meal within 2 to 3 hours of bedtime, because although a substantial intake of food can make you feel drowsy initially, you will be more prone to restlessness as the gut undertakes digestion.

      Try to avoid spicy foods or those that are difficult to digest.

      Keep your bedroom as a place for sleep cool, free from distractions such as tv, and dark.

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  • Your Overall Diet Score Is Critically Low
  • Your current dietary patterns represent a threat to both your current health status as well as future risk of poor quality of life in old age.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite:
    • We are what we eat. Diet contributes to general wellbeing in so many different ways.

      Modern high pressure life with high dependence upon convenience has had a major negative impact on diet standards.

      There is not one single food or type of food that provides all the nutrients that the human body needs to function efficiently.

      • A balanced diet is made up of proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, fibre and water.
      • Carbohydrates, proteins and fats are known as macronutrients because they are required in the body in larger amounts.
      • Vitamins and minerals are known as micronutrients because they are needed in relatively small amount but nevertheless are essential.
    • A balanced diet will depend on the types of food eaten over a period of time and the nutritional needs of the particular individual.

      The wider the variety of foods eaten, the more nutrients will be provided by them.

      Check the diet assessment section in this report to determine what changes you can make to improve your wellbeing

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Living Environment

  • Your Environment Quality Is Extremely Poor
  • You have assessed the quality of your environment as extremely poor. This may be a matter over which you have little control.
    It is important to compensate for this by improving other aspects of your life over which you do have control, as well as doing all you can to influence those responsible for investment to improve it.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • People who are socially and economically disadvantaged often live in the worst environments experience the worst air quality and have less access to green space and adequate housing. These problems can have a major affect people's health and wellbeing. 

      A poor local environment can also limit the opportunities available for people to improve their lives and undermine attempts to renew local neighbourhoods.

      • Often environmental problems are caused by the actions of others who do not live in the affected community.
      • Most affected have not been involved in the decisions that affect the quality of their environment.
      • Tackling environmental inequalities and ensuring that all people have access to a good quality environment in the future is critical to both personal wellbeing and sustainable development of society.
    • The environment in which we live provides several components important for our general wellbeing. These can exert a positive effect on our wellbeing. Having parks and green space nearby along with shops and good local services e.g. medical and transport can be vital to our wellbeing.

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  • Your Life Pressures Are Very low
  • The pressure on your life from your daily tasks is very low. There are however a number of strategies that may be helpful to you to help manage and even reduce further reduce the negative impact of daily stress. Most of these involve examining how you go about your daily life and making appropriate changes.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • We all need some pressure in our daily lives and working lives - it can make our day more satisfying giving a sense of achievement and improves our sense of wellbeing.

      Too much pressure however, without the chance to recover, can causes stress. Too little stimulus can cause withdrawal self-doubt and depression.

    • Pressure management techniques exist that aim to promote one or more of these approaches. You can learn these techniques from stress management course, books or at therapy sessions run by a counsellor or psychotherapist. Good day-to-day practices include:

      • Taking regular breaks at work.
      • Completing one task before starting another.
      • Make sure your work environment is comfortable.
      • If possible, don't work long hours - sometimes projects need extra time, but working long hours over many weeks or months doesn't generally lead to better results at work.
    • For those in work it's important to talk directly to your manager about work-related stress if it has become an issue. He or she has a duty to take reasonable steps to try to resolve the problem.

      There is no single cause of daily life pressures. Although there can be sudden, unexpected pressures, it's often the result of the cumulative effect of a number of stressful factors that build up over time that cause the problems.
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  • Impact Of Life Events Are Extremely Low
  • You have not experienced a life changing event that is having a negative impact on your general wellbeing. This programme focuses particularly on stressful life events such as the death of a spouse, divorce and marital separation, major accident, redundancy and retirement.
    This assessment however focuses particularly on stressful life events. For example, the death of a spouse, or a divorce and marital separation.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • The meaning of a life event varies from person to person. For example, the breakdown of a relationship may have more significance to a person if, as a child, they experienced the breakdown of their parents' marriage.

      However, a person who has a lot of social support may not find the breakdown of a relationship as difficult to cope with compared to someone who is left socially isolated.

      Stressful life events can cause a variety of undesirable effects on our wellbeing and health. Such life events as well as being stressful in themselves, often require major adaptations on the part of the individual and these in themselves are an additional cause of stress. This can leave such persons very vulnerable.

    • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can occur some time after the distressing event. For example, the breakdown of a relationship may have more significance to a person if, as a child, they experienced the breakdown of their parents' marriage.

    • These are major changes that occur suddenly in someone's life. They don't necessarily have to be bad, for example winning the lottery, and so can be viewed as being either desirable or undesirable.

      Life events are often associated with the onset of both psychiatric illness and physical illness. Negative effects of major life events on wellbeing and psychological health, do not necessarily occur immediately after the event but can occur up to six months post the event.

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  • Accomodation Quality Is Good
  • You have assessed the quality of your current accommodation as good. This may be a matter over which you have more scope to improve. It is important that wherever possible you direct resources to make it as comfortable as possible to help mitigate any negative impact this may have on your wellbeing.
    There is growing evidence that the quality of housing has a significant impact on wellbeing and has a significant impact on public health.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • The physical characteristics of indoor accommodation are important in contributing to wellbeing and maintaining good health. The fact that poor quality accommodation is often situated in impoverished surroundings with few local amenities contributes further to making vulnerable individuals housebound.

      Quality of accommodation is one of the key components of health inequalities.

      • People in modern societies spend more than 90% of their time indoors. Hence, there is growing evidence that the quality of housing has a significant impact on wellbeing and has a significant impact on public health.
      • Health inequalities are not reducing and the most socially and economically deprived are also those who suffer the worst health.
    • Minimising the adverse effects of poor housing remains a major challenge both for those living in such accommodation as well as for national government, local government and other agencies.

      However, the second half of the 20th century has seen a decline in political interest in the issue of poor housing, despite overwhelming evidence of widening inequalities in society and widening recognition of the health consequences of poor housing.

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  • Your Work / Life Balance Is Poor
  • There are a number of ways to help reduce and manage the negative impact on your wellbeing. Most of these involve examining how you go about your daily life and making appropriate changes.
    Some have so many conflicting demands upon their time that they find it difficult to cope. For many this is the conflict between the demands of work and the demands of home and the family. It may not necessarily be just work however it may be between dependent relatives or other out of work commitments.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Those who are successful in maintaining a healthy work / life balance have developed two main coping skills.

      1. Compartmentalising
      Developing the ability to live life as though it were in separate compartments by being fully involved and integrated when at work but ensuring work is both physically and mentally left behind when you are home. More importantly, ensure that personality does not follow totally from one compartment to the next. While at work be competitive, deadline-driven, task-oriented. When at home think about home.

      2. Time management and prioritising
      When work life becomes overstrained, it becomes important to work out priorities. There is often not sufficient time in the day to do everything something has to give. Work out what is important to you and make sure you engineer time to match, even if it is at longer intervals than you would ideally like e.g. fortnightly, monthly etc.

    • Useful techniques to address your work / life balance:

      • Not thinking about work in the evening or weekend
      • Use commuting time as your time, not an extension of the office
      • Adjust eating/activity to leave a significant break before bedtime to improve sleep
      • Take control over events you can control and try not to worry over events you cannot control.
      • Make contingency plans for things that could go wrong.
      • Apply the same effort to your family and friends as you do to work.
      • Give yourself some praise for what you have achieved.
    • Make sure that there is sufficient high quality time for relationships out of work e.g. your partner or your children. It is important to recognise that it is quality of time that is important to them not amount of time.

      Many are guilty of giving work maximum energy and drive and return home drained and fatigued. This is not balanced.

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  • Your Financial Pressures Are Critically High
  • It is very important to try to find a way to cope with your financial stress, or else you risk facing far worse problems in terms of your overall health and wellbeing.
    Living in a consumer society comes with its benefits. Unfortunately it also comes with its downfalls. The downside of living in an era in which barter is no longer viable is that everything costs money, which means you have to have money in order to survive. 
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • There are many ways to reduce or eliminate stress brought on by financial hardships. The best solution is to remove your financial stressors if you can. This could mean finding a better job (which is not necessarily in your control), adopting an alternative form of earning (freelancing, starting a home-based business), changing your living situation to better live within your means (move into a smaller space, take on roommates), consolidating debt, or even declaring bankruptcy. Whatever you can do to remove yourself from a stressful situation should help to solve your stress issues.

    • There are many free ways to releave stress. Something as simple as engaging in physical activity, employing meditation techniques, or finding free (or inexpensive) mental health aid through your local social services. Chances are what works for one person may not work for another, but you are going to have to try to find a way to cope with your financial stress, or else you risk facing far worse problems in terms of your overall health and wellbeing.

    • Financial hardships have increase the stress level of many people in troubled times. The additional stresses of financial burden can have serious implications for your overall health.

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Diet Assessment

  • Your Calorie Intake Is Very High
  • Your self assessed dietary intake of portion size and calorie intake reveal that this is too high. This tendency to overeat could constitute a threat to your wellbeing. You should take steps to exercise contol over both calorie intake and portion size.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Without a doubt, larger food and drink portions significantly affect our eating habits. 

      While common sense may tell you that you simply eat until you feel "full" regardless of how much or little you are served, in fact research studies show that when people are given more food, they tend to eat more of it, even past the point of feeling full.

      • In the 1950s an average meal of a cheeseburger French fries and soft drink would be about 600 calories, slightly under one third of the total calories an average person needs in one day.  If that If that same meal were eaten today, you're likely to consume more than 1,200 calories in one sitting - over half of your daily needs!
    • Over time the stomach becomes enlarged from eating too many large meals. The signal to the brain that sufficient food has been eaten is delivered when the stomach is stretched to capacity.

      If the stomach is enlarged, this signal will never be transmitted.

      Even if all other aspects of the diet are good, overeating will lead to an increase in weight and, in particular, fat deposition.

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  • Your Fat Intake Is Extremely High
  • Your self assessed intake of saturated fats is extremely high. Balance of fat intake is an important part of dietary control. You should reduce intake of saturated fats and increase intake of unsaturated fats particularly omega 3 fats.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Fat can be divided into two main groups - saturated and unsaturated.

      Saturated fat is usually from animal sources. It's found in lard, butter, hard margarine, cheese, whole milk and anything that contains these ingredients, such as cakes, chocolate, biscuits, pies and pastries. It's also the white fat you can see on red meat and underneath poultry skin.

      The value of saturated and unsaturated fat in our diets isn't fully understood yet but generally, eating too much saturated fat is associated with increased blood cholesterol concentrations and an increased risk of heart disease.

      • Just 1g provides nine calories - more than double the calories in 1g of protein or carbohydrate. This means it's much easier to consume too many calories when eating high-fat foods.
      • We all need some types of fat such as omega 3 fats in our diet. These fats are called essential fatty acids (EFAs), but are only required in small quantities. These EFAs are the key to good health.
    • To reduce the amount of fat in your diet, try the following:

      • Eat fresh fruit rather than biscuits and savoury snacks, which are often high in fat.
      • Buy lean cuts of meat and reduced-fat minces and trim any visible fat off meat and poultry.
      • Poach, steam, grill or bake food rather than fry it.
      • Swap whole milk for semi-skimmed or skimmed.
      • Opt for low-fat dairy products.
      • If you use lard, butter or hard margarine, switch to vegetable oil and low-fat spreads.
      • Sardines, flax seeds and walnuts are excellent food sources of omega-3 fatty acids.
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  • Your Fruit and Vegetable Intake Is Low
  • You have assessed yourself as having low inputs of fruit and vegetables in your diet. You should take steps to improve your consumpiton of friut and vegatables in your diet. This is to help protect your short term wellbeing, your medium term protection against circulatory diseases and cancer and your long term risk of premature ageing.
    Fruit and vegetables of differing colours contain diverse mixtures of phytonutrients (protective plant compounds). These can act as powerful antioxidants, protecting the body from harmful free radicals and helping to protect against certain chronic diseases such as cancer.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Fruit and vegetables are very important in providing three essential parts of the diet:

      • Roughage
        The passing of food through the gut should be relatively fast. If the transit time is slow it may cause digestive problems such as diverticulitis, and may contribute to colon cancer. Roughage in fruit and vegetables speeds up transit time
      • Vitamins and minerals
        These are essential for general health as well as being important for effective functioning of the body. Some vitamins, particularly C and E, are also very important as antioxidants.
      • Antioxidants
        These protect the body from free radicals, so increasing the amounts of vitamin C and E could significantly reduce the risk and rate of disease.
    • Stress and pressure cause the formation of free radicals and these in turn are probably major contributors to heart disease, cancer and brain deterioration.

      Some fruit and vegetables are labelled as 'superfoods' because they contain high concentrations of some phytonutrients, particularly antioxidants, which appear to be beneficial to health.

      Population studies have shown that people who eat a lot of fruit and vegetables may have a lower risk of chronic disease, such as heart disease and some cancers. Health benefits can be gained from fresh, canned (in natural juice), frozen, cooked, juiced or dried versions. Potatoes don't count though, as they're a starchy food.

    • Due to their nutritional and health benefits, it's recommended that fruit and vegetables form the basis of your diet, with a minimum intake of five portions each day - about a third of your daily food consumption.

      Currently the UK averages two to three portions a day, so we're falling well short of the benefits they can provide.

      Fruit and vegetables should be incorporated into every meal, as well as being the first choice for a snack.

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  • Your Salt Intake Is High
  • You have assessed your daily intake of salt as being at a slightly level. If you enjoy sat in your diet it can be difficult to reeducate your palate to consume less, but the effort will pay dividends in your improved wellbeing status and reduced health risk.
    Adults are advised to consume no more than 6g salt per day (about one teaspoon). Current intake is about 9g per day - that is 50 per cent higher than is recommended for good health.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Sodium, unlike all other minerals, is generally over consumed, with the dietary intake of salt being far in excess of the recommended daily requirement.

      Adults are advised to consume no more than 6g salt per day (about one teaspoon). Current intake is about 9g per day - that is 50 per cent higher than is recommended for good health.

      • The kidneys control fluid balance and mineral content of the blood.
      • Babies and children should have less salt than adults. High salt intake in babies can be especially dangerous, as their kidneys cannot cope with large amounts.
      • Excess salt excretion leads to increased fluid retention in the blood. This increases the total volume of fluid in the circulatory system, thus raising blood pressure.
      • Raised levels of salt in the bloodstream increase the likelyhood of clotting.
    • Convenience foods, ready meals and canned foods, as well as eating out frequently, all contribute to a higher sodium intake, therefore read labels carefully to compare foods and opt for those lower in salt.

      Many factors in the natural chemistry of the body increase the tendency to clotting which has long been demonstrated as increasing the rate of deposition of plaque on the inside of the arteries (furring of the arteries). Research indicates that in some individuals raised levels of salt in the bloodstream increase this clotting potential.

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  • Your Alcohol Intake Is Very High
  • Your self assesed level of alcohol is high and at a level that will increase your risk of disease as well as reducing your wellbeing status. It would be prudent to reduce this to a level less likely to influence your short term and long term risk.
    Drinking too much and/or drinking more than the recommended intake on a regular basis can also cause long-term damage to the body's internal organs.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • The liver plays a central role in many essential body functions including the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and fats, detoxification and excretion of waste products from the body.

      Chronic alcohol use is one of the major causes of liver cirrhosis (irreversible scarring of the liver). This happens because healthy liver cells die and the dead cells are replaced by fibrous tissue.

      Scarred tissue cannot function like healthy tissue so this condition can be life threatening if not treated early enough.

    • Excessive alcohol consumption can have the following effects on your health and wellbeing:

      • Stomach ulcers and gastrointestinal complications.
      • fertility problems
      • weight gain
      • General depletion of certain important vitamins and minerals.
    • Drinking alcohol in small quantities makes people feel relaxed, happy and even euphoric, but in larger quantities alcohol is a depressant. It switches off the part of the brain that controls judgement, leading to loss of inhibitions.

      Alcohol consumed in moderation is thought to help reduce the risk of heart disease.

      Indeed, alcohol consumption in conjunction with high intakes of fruit and vegetables may well explain increased health benefits'. Larger amounts of alcohol can act as an irritant to the body, both in the digestive system and to various internal organs and probably contributes to the incidence of cancer in these areas.

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Disease Risk

  • Your Cholesterol Levels Are High
  • Your cholesterol levels are high. You should seek advice from either you doctor or pharmacist. Combining lifestyle change with cholesterol lowering drugs can control effectively cholesterol levels and rduce the risk of circulatory diease.
    Too much cholesterol in the blood increases the risk of coronary heart disease and disease of the arteries.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • About 80% of the body's cholesterol is produced by the liver, while the rest comes from our diet. The main sources of dietary cholesterol are meat, poultry, fish, and dairy products. Organ meats, such as liver, are especially high in cholesterol content, while foods of plant origin contain no cholesterol.

      After a meal, dietary cholesterol is absorbed from the intestine and stored in the liver. The liver is able to regulate cholesterol levels in the blood stream and can secrete cholesterol if it is needed by the body.

      LDL cholesterol is called "bad" cholesterol, because elevated levels of LDL cholesterol are associated with an increased risk of coronary heart disease, stroke, and peripheral artery disease.

      • Cholesterol forms part of the outer membrane that surrounds every cell. It's used to insulate nerve fibres (and so make nerve signals travel properly) and make hormones, which carry chemical signals around the body.
      • There are no established "normal" blood levels for total and LDL cholesterol. In most other blood tests in medicine, normal ranges can be set by taking measurements from large number of healthy subjects.
      • The normal range of LDL cholesterol among "healthy" adults (adults with no known coronary heart disease) may be too high. The atherosclerosis process may be quietly progressing in many healthy children and adults with average LDL cholesterol blood levels, putting them at risk of developing coronary heart diseases in the future.
    • The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) and Department of Health list the following cholesterol guidelines:

      Total cholesterol consumption
      Less than 5.0mmol/l. Total cholesterol is the sum of LDL (low density) cholesterol, HDL (high density) cholesterol, VLDL (very low density) cholesterol, and IDL (intermediate density) cholesterol.

      LDL cholesterol (Bad cholesterol)
      Less than 3.0mmol/l.

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  • Your Blood Pressure Is Normal
  • Having high blood pressure (hypertension) is not usually something that you feel or notice. It does not tend to produce obvious signs or symptoms. The only way to know what your blood pressure is, is to have it measured.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Blood pressure is measured in 'millimetres of mercury' (mmHg) and is written as two numbers. For example, if your reading is 120/80mmHg, your blood pressure is '120 over 80'. Every blood pressure reading consists of two numbers or levels. They are shown as one number on top of the other.

      The first (or top) number is your systolic blood pressure. It is the highest level your blood pressure reaches when your heart beats.

      The second (or bottom) number is your diastolic blood pressure. It is the lowest level your blood pressure reaches as your heart relaxes between beats. You probably have high blood pressure (hypertension) if your blood pressure readings are consistently 140 over 90, or higher, over a number of weeks

    • The main causes of high blood pressure include:

      • Too much salt in your diet.
      • Not enough fruit and vegetables.
      • Lack of regular exercise.
      • Being overweight
      • Drinking too much alcohol.
    • High blood pressure usually has no signs or symptoms.

      The only way to know if you have high blood pressure is to have yours measured.

      A single high reading does not necessarily mean you have high blood pressure. Many things can affect your blood pressure through the day, Your doctor will take a number of blood pressure readings to see that it stays high over time.

      Occasionally people with very high blood pressure say they experience headaches, but it is best to visit your GP if you are concerned about symptoms.

      You can help to lower your blood pressure - and your risk of stroke and heart attack - by making lifestyle changes.

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    • Insulin acts as a key unlocking the cells and enabling them to take in glucose. If there is insufficient insulin, or it is not working properly, the cells are only partially unlocked (or not at all) and glucose builds up in the blood.

      Symptoms occur because some or all of the glucose stays in the blood and it isn't being used as fuel for energy.

      The body tries to reduce blood glucose levels by flushing the excess glucose out of the body in the urine and the measurement of this is often used as a preliminary test for diabetes.

      • Type 2 diabetes usually appears in people over the age of 40
      • South Asian and African people are at a greater risk from the age of 25 onwards.
      • It is also increasingly becoming more common in children, adolescents and young people of all ethnicities.
      • Type 2 diabetes accounts for between 85 and 95 per cent of all people with diabetes and is treated with a healthy diet and increased physical activity. In addition to this, medication and/or insulin is often required.
      • Type 2 diabetes develops slowly over a period of years and may only be picked up in a routine medical check up.
    • Symptoms Include:

      • Passing urine more often than usual, especially at night
      • Increased thirst
      • Extreme tiredness
      • Unexplained weight loss
      • Genital itching or regular episodes of thrush
      • Slow healing of cuts and wounds
      • Blurred vision

      Symptoms are quickly relieved once diabetes is treated and under control.

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  • You Are At High Risk From Smoking
  • Your risk from smoking is critical. The single most important thing you can do to improve all aspects of your health and wellbeing is to stop.
    Smoking directly causes many deaths and contributes to many more. Of these deaths, about half are from smoking-related cancers, a quarter from cardiovascular disease and another quarter die slowly from emphysema and other chronic lung diseases.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Smoking causes a wide number of diseases. Cardiovascular disease is the main cause of death due to smoking.

      Hardening of the arteries is a process that develops over years, when cholesterol and other fats deposit in the arteries, leaving them narrow, blocked or rigid. When the arteries narrow (atherosclerosis), blood clots are likely to form.

      Smoking accelerates the hardening and narrowing process in your arteries.

      • Cigarettes contain more than 4000 chemical compounds and at least 400 toxic substances.
      • Each cigarette shortens a smoker's life by around 11 minutes
      • The number of people under the age of 70 who die from smoking-related diseases exceeds the total figure for deaths caused by breast cancer, AIDS, traffic accidents and drug addiction.
      • Smokers are more likely to get cancer than non-smokers (particularly lung cancer).
      • Blood clots are two to four times more likely in smokers.
    • Most people know that smoking can cause lung cancer, but it can also cause many other cancers and illnesses.

      Stopping smoking is the single biggest thing you can do to improve your health, but it's a difficult task.

      Non-smokers and ex-smokers can look forward to a healthier old age than smokers.

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  • Your BMI Indicates You Are Over weight
  • Your results show that your visceral fat levels ar slightly raised and could potentially become a threat to your wellbeing. It is important that you take steps to reduce this level through diet and exercise to protect your long term wellbeing status.
    Visceral fat constitutes a major threat to our wellbeing. It most strongly correlated with risk factors such as insulin resistance, which sets the stage for type 2 diabetes.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.

    • One reason excess visceral fat is so harmful could be its location near the portal vein, which carries blood from the intestinal area to the liver. Substances released by visceral fat, influence the production of blood lipids.

      Together, insulin resistance, high blood glucose, excess abdominal fat, unfavourable cholesterol levels (including high triglycerides), and high blood pressure constitute the metabolic syndrome, a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke.

    • Excess fat at the waist has been linked to several other disorders.

      • For women, a waist-to-hip ratio above 0.85 was associated with a 52% increase in colorectal cancer risk.
      • Older people with more visceral fat had worse memory and less verbal fluency, even after taking diabetes into account. Thus it affects mental as well as physical wellbeing
    • Visceral fat is directly linked with higher total cholesterol and LDL (bad) cholesterol, lower HDL (good) cholesterol, and insulin resistance. Glucose levels in the blood rise, heightening the risk for diabetes.

      Fat cells particularly visceral are biologically active. They produce hormones and other substances that can profoundly affect our health.

      The good news is that visceral fat yields fairly easily to exercise and diet, with benefits ranging from lower blood pressure to more favourable cholesterol levels.

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Mental Health and Ageing

  • Your Dementia Risk Is High
  • You should make changes to your lifestyle in your current quality of life assessment, particulary attitudes, social support, external pressure, work/life pressures.
    Throughout life there is a gradual loss of brain cells. As brain cells are lost through the ageing process the brain restores the essential nerve pathways by using the redundant cells. Keeping the brain active seems to promote this action. This may be the origins of the old adage "if you don't use it you will lose it". Staying mentally active is essential in maintaining mental performance.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • Senility is associated with the deterioration of the body and mind in the elderly.

      It is commonly referred to as dementia. Different areas of the brain control different skills and abilities. When mental functions such as memory, language, orientation, or judgment deteriorate, this may be a direct result of the way dementia has affected the brain.

      • Six out of ten people with dementia are undiagnosed Dementia affects 750,000 people in Britain and is one of the major causes of disability later in life.
      • Lifestyle changes can reduce both the overall risk as well as the rate of deterioration of these conditions.
    • Senility symptoms can include:

      • Progressive Memory Loss
      • Poor Judgment
      • Impaired Concentration
      • Confusion

      Staying mentally active is essential in maintaining mental performance.

      Early diagnosis and support is essential to any persons long term well-being.

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  • Your Frailty Risk Is Very High
  • Your risk of becoming frail and developing conditons associated with frailty are very high. There are a number of dietary changes, physical activity changes as well as a range of supplements that can help.
    Consult your pharmacist for detailed advice.
    Further help can be sought from the sources opposite.
    • One of the most commonly occurring conditions associated with ageing is frailty. Muscles lose strength, bones lose mass and become weak, flexibility is reduced and sense of balance deteriorates.

      Common conditions associated with these changes are osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and osteoporosis. These are all conditions whose development has been contributed to and are to an extent controllable by lifestyle behaviour.

    • Key Factors contributing to frailty:

      • Musculo degeneraton.
        If muscles are not used they degenerate. Lack of appropriate physical activity also results in reduction in flexibility and reduced sense of balance. An appropriate exercise regimen can drastically slow the rate o these deteriorations.
      • Osteoporosis
        Osteoporosis is a musculoskeletal condition that affects many older people especially women post menopause. It is characterised by progressive loss of bone mass, with decreased density and enlargement of bone spaces producing porosity and brittleness. If muscular strength increases bone strength increases to match.
      • Arthritis
        Arthritis is a group of musculoskeletal conditions in which there is wearing and inflammation of the joints, causing chronic pain, swelling, stiffness, disability and sometimes deformity.
    • These is good reason to believe that lifestyle combined with drug therapy will deliver even greater benefits.

      All these conditions impact greatly on wellbeing status and quality of life.

      The earlier good lifestyle behaviours are adopted the greater the long term payback.

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Uncle Norman

The 'Uncle Norman' Factor

We all know of an "Uncle Norman". An overweight, inactive smoker who died in his nineties of natural causes. "Look at Norman, he smoked, drank, the most exercise he ever did was lift his beer mug and he lived to ninety". We also know of a younger fit man who died a premature death with a heart attack in his forties. This gives us little incentive to adopt a healthy lifestyle.

Norman was unusual and very lucky. He probably had genes that protected him from heart disease and lung cancer. The younger man was very unlucky. He had probably inherited a set of genes that made him more vulnerable.

The vast majority of us are not like Uncle Norman or the younger man. Our genes neither protect us, nor increase our risks from the effects of poor lifestyle. Our risk is then mainly related to our lifesyle.

It is important to point out that this programme is based on a risk assessment and a probability, the genetics as outlined above can influence this positively or negatively.