Ranking Lifestyle Factors

What poses the greatest risk to health?

Australian researchers looked at various lifestyle factors to try to rank which ones, individually or in combination, posed the greater risks to health.  Not surprisingly, smoking was the highest hazard, with high alcohol consumption and physical inactivity close behind.  Interesting factors that had significant impact were prolonged sitting time, short sleep duration and long sleep duration!  Obviously, combining two or more of these lifestyle factors upped the risks.

Nutrition labels on foods help us to make better choices for our health but, when dining out, we generally don’t know how good or bad the menu items really are.

Recently, the New York City Board of Health unanimously voted to have chain restaurants and some concessions post salt warnings on their menus.  Any item containing more than 2300mcg of salt is labelled with the image of a salt shaker on a black triangle.  This may be the start of a great trend!

In this era of more casual dressing, a study has found patients prefer their physicians to wear a white coat – at least if s/he is a dermatologist!

Apparently, professional attire – in particular, a white labcoat – forms part of the impression the physician makes on the patient; patients believe the physician to be more knowledgeable & skillful.  Such impressions have been shown to affect patient outcomes, not just in dermatology, but other medical specialties as well.

Statistics are showing that one of the most dangerous times for patients is the time period after discharge from hospital.  Often, this transition involves medication changes, diverse care providers, uncertainty about procedures, and delays in documentation for both patients and care providers – and sometimes combinations of these issues.  It behoves all involved – caregivers AND patients with their families – to be extra vigilant and ask questions during this risky time.

Our pharmacists want to ensure you, or your family members, understand your therapy.  Take the time to listen to the counseling and don’t be afraid to ask questions.  Isn’t your health worth the time investment?