Incorporating a Health in All Policies Approach in Canada

Canada … we need to learn more from Finland and work harder into implementing the Health in All Policies in Canada. Health in All Policies is an approach to public policy development that encourages governments to systematically consider how policy decisions may affect the health of a population – See more at: https://nurseone.ca/en/tools/health-in-all-policies-toolkit/toolkit#sthash.MexrJsnw.dpuf.  Our health is […]

Canada … we need to learn more from Finland and work harder into implementing the Health in All Policies in Canada.

Health in All Policies is an approach to public policy development that encourages governments to systematically consider how policy decisions may affect the health of a population – See more at: https://nurseone.ca/en/tools/health-in-all-policies-toolkit/toolkit#sthash.MexrJsnw.dpuf.  Our health is dependent on many different aspects of our life.  Jobs, relationships, financial stability, education, where we live and  many other factors.

One factor that we need to deal with is obesity.  Knowing that obesity is on the rise, especially in children, WHY are we not doing more to help reduce these numbers?

 

My oldest daughter started Kindergarten this year.  I am now starting to see first hand what the school system is like. I am sad. I am sad that kids are not being more active in their day.  I am sad that there’s a hot lunch option called Healthy Hunger at her school that offers hot lunches every Wednesday from restaurants like McDonalds, Taco Time, Pizza 73, and DQ.  I’m not going to get into why those restaurants should not be under the term “Healthy Hunger” in this article (I’ll address that in another post!).   I’m sad that their school doesn’t have a playground for the children to play on at recess.  I’m sad that when I talk to teachers, they inform me that they have no say into what children bring for snack time.

Actually I’m passed sad, I’m angry now!

I guess being in the Health and Fitness industry for the past 13 years … more if you counted my elementary and high school years where I played sports and was active, but 13 years since Convocating from University, I am passionate about all of this.  I look around society and see what watching too much TV does to our children’s eyes, attention span and poor social skills.   I see what those sugary snacks and drinks are doing to their bodies.  I see how physical inactivity is causing them to not be physically literate.

I admire Finland.  Finland has been working with the different health departments to reduce the number of obese children in it’s country. “The urban planning department improved school playgrounds. Recreation implemented more physical activity in schools. Nutrition worked with day care centres to eliminate sugary snacks and with schools to serve healthier lunches. And the health department instituted comprehensive yearly health examinations in schools, which included parent education on healthy eating.” http://www.who.int/features/2015/finland-health-in-all-policies/en/  Obviously this takes time, work, effort, passion, and dedication.  I think that we, as a country, need to start taking more action ourselves to live a healthy life.

The first comment people always say is … we don’t have enough resources to do this.  Well, as a country in a bit of a financial rut right now … create jobs.  Create opportunity.  Invest in the health of Canadians.

 

The Canadian Medical Association had a great write up about the Health in All Policies.  Read more here: http://policybase.cma.ca/dbtw-wpd/Policypdf/PD15-10.pdf

 

 

My conclusion:

It starts with the adults.  We need to be taught on how to eat healthier.  How to be more active.  How to create wellness and balance in our lives. How our actions and habits will influence our children.  It takes 1 person to get the ball rolling.  It takes 1 person to speak up and start talking.  It takes 1 person to positively influence another person and now … 2 people are on board and the ball keeps rolling and rolling until we create a community of health and wellness promoters.

This is my goal with my company.  Join me!

 

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