The World Health Organization (WHO) has provided a list of recommendation on how to be healthier. Just like everyone, as healthcare professionals (HCP), we can be healthier. Through my respiratory therapy blog, I try to support the development of HCPs. While the recommendations on this post are not RT skill set or knowledge based, it may still be beneficial at the core level.
**Legal stuff: The mentioned links are some of my personal references. Please consult your healthcare team before making changes.
- Eating a healthy Diet.
>Internal Link: Respiratory.Blog post on Nutrition: http://respiratory.blog/improved-part-2-nutritionist/
>External Link 1: WHO’s Nutrition page
>External Link 2: Meal Ideas for breakfast, lunch, supper and Snacks by Government of Canada. Visit the website for details
- Be physically active, every day, your way.
>Internal Link 1: Respiratory.Blog post on improved physical health
>Internal Link 2: Respiratory.Blog post on foot health
>External Link: Goal Setting Worksheet by ParticipAction
- Get Vaccinated.
>External Link: World Health Organization Documents
- Don’t use any form of Tobacco.
>External Link 1: WHO Quitting
>External Link 2: WHO Tobacco
>External Link 3: WHO Smoking Cessation
>External Link 4: A Guide for Tobacco Users to quit
>External Link 5: Smoker’s Helpline
- Avoid or minimize use of alcohol.
>External Link 1: WHO’s Alcohol page
>External Link 2: Canadian Centre on Substance Use and Addiction
- Manage Stress for your Physical Health and Mental Health
>External Link 1: WHO. Mental Health: Strengthening Our Response.
>External Link 2: Useful resources from RN.com Stress Relief for the Healthcare Professional (pdf document).
- Practice Good Hygiene
I know the recommendation is based on over all hygiene, but I am going to include a link more specific to hand hygiene:
>External Link 1: Hand Hygiene Module by Public Health Ontario
- Don’t speed or drink and drive
>External Link 1: WHO. Road Injury continues to be one of the top 10 causes of death (2016):
>External Link 2: Safe Driving Practices by Ontario Ministry of Transportation
- Wear a Seat-Belt when Driving and Helmet when Cycling
>External Link 1: WHO Injury Prevention
>External Link 2: Road Safety in Canada
>External Link 3: Bicycle Safety by Ontario Ministry of Transportation
- Practice Safe Sex
>External Link 1: WHO Reproductive Health
>External Link 2: Health Canada – Sexual Health https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/sexual-health.html
>External Link 3: Sexual Health Ontario
- Regularly Check Your Health
>External Link 1: Routine Checkups by Health Link BC
>External Link 2: Well-Visits by Caring for Kids (CPS)
>External Link 3: Choosing Wisely Canada
- Breast Feeding: Best for Babies
>External Link 1: WHO. Breastfeeding page.
>External Link 2: Caring for Kids (CPS). Breastfeeding
My hope is that you will use the WHO recommendations to improve as an individual and as a healthcare professional.
Personally, I have begun incorporating more physical activity in my days, including more frequent visits to the gym. I find exercising refreshes my mind, gives me more energy, and makes me feel healthy. Also, the upcoming 5k walk/run on the first day of RT Week, in support of Respiratory Therapists Without Borders, has been another motivation for me to get back in shape.
Planning for healthy meals has allowed me to save money, eat healthy and reduce unnecessary waste. By planning meals prior to grocery shopping, I tend to stick to the grocery list and am less influenced by delicious and tempting junk food. When I take my lunch to work fewer excuses to eat unhealthy.
Over the last 4 years I have recognized the importance of a healthy mental and physical state. I experienced a burn out post graduation following a few months of over-work at a job which lacked a nurturing environment and supportive leadership. This was exacerbated by my lack of proper sleep quality, healthy eating, sufficient physical activity and poor time-management. Since then, I have learned to be more mindful of my physical and mental status. While I am far from being perfect and continue to make mistakes along the way, I still try to be more self-aware, more mindful and goal oriented.
Let’s continue our journey in becoming quality HCPs.