Minister of Health and Sports of Aruba (2009-2013), Netherlands
*Corresponding author: Visser R, Minister of Health and Sports of Aruba (2009-2013), Netherlands
Submission: November 08, 2021; Published: November 16, 2021
ISSN 2637-7934 Volume3 Issue3
The insufficient development of attitudes and behaviors of individuals and communities in relation to protect health, must be replaced with lifestyles that facilitate well-being and health. This observation justified the realization of this study’s outcome that allows proposing a strategy to develop effective and sustainable healthy lifestyles which aim at new generations through responsible actions of adults in the present and near future. Data and information on behaviors associated with the confrontation of childhood obesity and COVID-19 were analyzed. The results of the analyses were evaluated to propose a strategy to improve healthy lifestyles. This study allows us to conclude that the behavior of the global health situation corresponds to the lack of healthy lifestyles in the population resulted to propose a strategy based on lessons learned to improve the quality of life of current and future generations.
Keywords: Children; Healthy lifestyles; Global health; Alcohol; Smoking; Harmful habits
Attention on attitudes and behaviors of individuals and communities concerning health continue to improve for being part of the greatest well-being for members of the human species  in a setting where the benefits of adherence to lifestyles have been scientifically demonstrated healthy, such as physical activity, developing a healthy diet, no smoking, maintaining healthy body weight and not ingesting excessive amount of alcohol because they contribute to increase disease-free life expectancy . However, there are frequently high prevalence rates of sedentary lifestyle, poor diet, excessive exposure to television screens or computer equipment, smoking and ingestion of alcohol, among other harmful habits . Childhood obesity and COVID-19 seem to be very common recently. The requirement of the active participation of the population in the fulfillment of measures that facilitate to overcome these diseases. This type of procedure is depending on accurate information, interpretations, and action-plans that correspond to the pandemic. Based on the previous approaches, the purpose of the study is to propose a strategy to develop an effective and sustainable healthy lifestyle that is aimed at new generations through responsible actions of adults in the present and near future.
Data and information on behaviors and behaviors associated with the confrontation of childhood obesity in Aruba and statistics and scientific publications in relation to COVID-19 were analyzed. The results of the analyses carried out were evaluated to propose a strategy that contributes to the lifestyle improvements.
Aruba is a high economic income generating place and the international tourism is
affected by one of the highest rates of obesity prevalence in the world. It developed a multilevel, multisectoral and multidisciplinary strategy to modify
the perception of the population concerning the disease and
improve their lifestyles associated with diet and physical activities
. In this country, the consumption of foods with high content of
fats and simple sugars in amounts higher than energy requirements
of sedentary lifestyle, in all age groups, coincided with favorable
perceptions of excess body weight on the basis for the interpretation
that such a situation was an expression of health and well-being
before 2009. The antecedent of low financial income corresponding
to a low prevalence of obesity in times of hardship stimulated the
refusal to reduce obesity . In the period of 2009-2013, an intense
health education campaign was introduced, aimed at the entire
population that managed to reduce sedentary lifestyle and stop the
childhood obesity as an outcome of the campaign, but the preference
for unhealthy eating did not change . The Ministry of Health and
Sports joined forces with other ministries such as education and
economy, civil society, the food industry, tourism facilities, nongovernmental
organizations, and international health, sports, and
education institutions. This effort and messages were addressed to
the entire population that aimed to stop the epidemic through the
issuance of sufficient information to improve correct perceptions
about health and stimulate changes towards healthy lifestyles .
The emphasis on having fun during massive physical activities
facilitated a decrease in sedentary lifestyle , although the effect
on daily life was minimal. That is, the habit of least effort in the
execution of daily activities did not change significantly.
These results coincide with reports from other researchers that indicating the difficulty in modifying behaviors and behaviors of the population transmitted over decades , since changing habits requires actions over a long period of time to inform correctly to facilitate responsible actions and motivate with actions that constitute with examples to imitate. The effort made in Aruba, with interventions from all sectors and aimed at all stages of life, was positively valued by the Pan American Health Organization  and the United Nations General Assembly . One of the most important factors in the COVID-19 epidemic is globalization, where the advanced facilities and frequency of transportations between different regions in the world facilitate the spread of SARS CoV- 2, although the health behavior of countries in all regions of the world is diverse, as seen in the large differences between case and death rates. The level of compliance with personal protection measures, social distancing, and population isolation seems to correspond with the reported statistics . The epidemiological situation of COVID-19 has a direct relationship with the variants of SARS CoV-2 that imply changes in transmissibility, frequency of asymptomatic patients, and levels of affectation in different age groups; but the lifestyles of communities and individuals determine the seriousness of impacts caused by the epidemic. The issuance of sufficient information to facilitate correct perceptions about health and strengthening healthy lifestyles seems to be an unsolved issue in the world, as can be seen in the confrontation of the COVID-19 epidemic according to pronouncements of governments, communities, and individuals in relation to the protection of health. It can be affirmed that it is not possible to maintain people’s trust, among other factors, due to a lack of clarity, certainty, precision, and transparency in the messages of the authorities. It is known that health is the most precious good, but this maxim is not enough for its preservation by those who do not feel the damage of the disease in the cost-benefit assessment, expressed in the priority to certain economic or cultural factors, even though they have worse experiences associated with that disease. Prevention measures are also stopped due to stress and anxiety caused by these measures brought up by the consequences of the social isolation adopted to prevent the transmission of SARS CoV-2 . In an evaluation of the public perception of the risk of COVID-19 in countries of Europe, America and Asia, various levels of concern were found associated with personal experiences with the virus, individual and prosocial values, hearing about the risk from friends and family, trust in government, science and health personnel [13,14]. Another aspect to consider in comprehensive health promotion is the relevance of multifactorial and multidirectional relationships of all ecological factors in the presentation and development of zoonoses and other neglected diseases. Viral mutations that become variants with the ability to overcome barriers of transmissibility between different species and adopt the form of transmission among human species, such as SARS CoV-2, are examples of their importance. According to scientific research that published for several decades, these indications correspond to the need to protect the planet with a comprehensive ecological vision of health . In the paragraphs dedicated to childhood obesity in Aruba and to COVID-19, scientific advances can be observed that are not sufficiently used in practice to improve health, which is why it can be understood that new strategies are required to promote healthy lifestyles for all.
Reflections on the information expressed in the previous paragraphs facilitate proposing the strategy to give our children a better world and our world better children. It can be part of the solution according to the following principles.
a) Produce healthy lifestyles in the new generations based on the example of adults, with an emphasis on the adoption of good habits by parents, educators and people who dominate social media.
b) Conduct actions in a multidisciplinary, multisectoral and multilevel way in the construction of healthy environments for children.
c) To act according to the approach of the whole life course, in accordance with the contributions of science and the sociocultural conditions of the population.
d) Compliance with these principles requires a global and inclusive effort.
The impact and effects of the global health bad situation corresponds to the lack of healthy lifestyles in the population, for which a strategy is proposed based on lessons learned to improve the quality of life of current and future generations.
© 2021 Visser R. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and build upon your work non-commercially.