Effect of the Economy on Society's Health

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Recessions are generally believed to be caused by a widespread drop in spending. Beginning in the United States in December 2007 the industrialized world has been undergoing a recession, a pronounced deceleration of economic activity. The financial crisis has been linked to reckless and unsustainable lending practices resulting from the deregulation and securitization of real estate mortgages in the United States. Whatever the cause, there is one question that has been getting the least amount of attention; what effects does the economy have on our health as a society?  The World Health Organization has defined health as being "a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. So, health is maintained and improved not only through the advancement and application of health science, but also through the efforts and intelligent lifestyle choices of the individual and society. Of all the choices and individual can make in order to better, or in this case worsen, one’s health our focus will narrow on four, nutrition, exercise and stress.

Nutrition is defined as “nourishing or being nourished; the series of processes by which an organism takes in and assimilates food for promoting growth and replacing worn or injured tissues or alleviated with a healthy diet.” A poor diet can have an injurious impact on health, causing deficiency diseases like anemia; health-threatening conditions like obesity, and such common chronic systemic diseases as diabetes, and osteoporosis. With unemployment affecting ten percent of the U.S. population and employers cutting wages in every industry, focus shifts from proper nutrition towards an affordable meal. Take Whole Foods for example, in 2009 profits decreased by 4.0% versus a 9.3% increase in the prior year. Being the world’s leader in natural and organic foods they pride themselves carrying the healthiest and freshest products around, but it comes with a price....
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