Health & Wellbeing

Master in Public Health – What does it all mean?

February 23, 2014

On Monday night I graduated from my Master in Public Health in Health Promotion WITHOUT a champagne.

For those that don’t know what the hell this, is Health Promotion is  “the process of enabling people to increase control over their [health] and its determinants, and thereby improve their health” .  Basically, everything we see such a quitting smoking ads, healthy eating campaigns, drink driving campaigns, safe sex campaigns (even HSM), are all health promotion. The idea is that people are given tools, influence and information to make healthier choices about their lives to change their behaviour which leads to better health. It is a tricky thing though because information alone will not lead to behaviour change.

We all KNOW we should cut down on our drinking/smoking/chocolate/hotchips but making the decision to change is hard. So what Chris Raine has started here with hello sunday morning on (https://www.hellosundaymorning.org) is pretty awesome, doing a HSM not only changes our behavior but also makes us feel like we are part of something 🙂
However there are social determinants which lead to poor health that people have NO control over; shitty housing, low income, conflict, floods, droughts etc. In learning through my course I really saw how AWESOME most of us have it here in Australia to lead healthy fulfilling lives.

We are not at risk of being bombed going for a run, we have parks, access to fresh food, the great outdoors and beaches that are free for all, and an amazing health system. This might be a debatable statement to some people but when you read statistics like 1 in 11 women in Afghanistan dies while giving birth then I think we have it pretty good here.

So instead of getting SMASHED at Graduation night I reflected on today how lucky I am to have a fit, healthy body and access to all the tools I need to lead a healthy fulfilling life….. Despite my grizzles about a couple of kilos which really doesn’t matter seeing all my organs work:

1. I can run, cycle, and swim. 5 years ago I could not run to the end of the block.

2. I have access to healthy food and clean water

3. I can run cycle and swim without fear of anything bad happening to me ( Besides getting cold)

4. I have access to hospitals nearby which would fix me for free in the event of a dire emergency. 

5. I have warm shelter to sleep at night. 

6. I am loved by my amazing husband, family and friends. 

I am 10 days in today after feeling crap for a week and today I have woken up noticing that my mind and skin is clearer.

I am having vivid graphic dreams and walking with an extra bounce in my step 🙂

*Originally posted on Hello Sunday morning on June 19th 2013

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