• Dear Guest, and welcome to RailUK Forums. Our non-railway discussion forums are currently restricted until members have five or more posts, and you will not be able to make a new thread or reply to an existing one in this section until you have made five or more posts elsewhere on the forum.

Future public health policy when the COVID is over

Status
Not open for further replies.

johnnychips

Established Member
Joined
19 Nov 2011
Messages
3,031
Location
Sheffield
There was a terrible incident about a teacher dying on her 25th birthday, widely reported. She was a recovering anorexic who was trying to tutor others suffering about this affliction, so I would expect her immune system would be compromised anyway.

Then there was a case reported on Joe Rogan, along the lines of ‘my brother was 22 and died of CV; he had some weight issues but he was healthy’. It turned out he was 5’ 10” and weighed 20 stone.

How can we make our countries more healthy, and thus less susceptible to diseases that attack our immune systems, already compromised by out bad lifestyle?

Mods: maybe this belongs in the General Discussion thread
 
Sponsor Post - registered members do not see these adverts; click here to register, or click here to log in
R

RailUK Forums

yorkie

Forum Staff
Staff Member
Administrator
Joined
6 Jun 2005
Messages
55,832
Location
Yorkshire
How can we make our countries more healthy, and thus less susceptible to diseases that attack our immune systems, already compromised by out bad lifestyle?

Free sports activities for young people
More after school clubs
Less tax on sports/fitness related activities
Less reliance on private cars
More walking/cycling routes

In reality this won't happen; people will continue to be unfit and fit people will continue to be expected to pay the price...

The media don't care about mental health or physical wellbeing; suicides go unreported so they can concentrate on Covid deaths to justify making us all less fit and more depressed.

I despair.
 

NorthOxonian

Established Member
Joined
5 Jul 2018
Messages
1,248
Location
Oxford/Newcastle
I am rather dreading the future of public health policy, to be honest. The response to the current virus has opened the door to much more aggressive authoritarianism going forward.

I would not be surprised if "unhealthy" food was banned entirely, for example. Or possibly made to use plain packaging as seen with cigarettes. It sounds ridiculous now, but the current crisis has set a precedent. I expect that from now on, public health types can just say that something saves lives, and it will be done.
 

yorkie

Forum Staff
Staff Member
Administrator
Joined
6 Jun 2005
Messages
55,832
Location
Yorkshire
(dated January 2018)
A 10-year-old Connecticut boy died of flu. So did a 21-year-old bodybuilder, and 4-year-old Jonah Reiben of Dayton, Ohio.

These are not the usual sick and elderly people who die from influenza. But every year, flu carries away perfectly healthy young adults and children, and tens of thousands of people over 65.
The H1N1 flu virus killed 282 U.S. children in 2009-2010, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.
So far this season, flu has killed 30 children, according to the latest CDC data. Last season, 110 children died from influenza in the U.S.
A question is: will the lockdown authoritarians shut up when the pandemic is over, or will they demand lockdowns for flu?

H1N1 is much more deadly than Sars-Cov-2 for younger people. But I don't think they really care about young people; if they did they'd not demand school closures and advocate depriving kids of their childhood. They use very rare younger Covid deaths to give the false impression they care about young people but his is bogus and disingenuous.
 

bramling

Veteran Member
Joined
5 Mar 2012
Messages
13,655
Location
Hertfordshire / Teesdale
Free sports activities for young people
More after school clubs
Less tax on sports/fitness related activities
Less reliance on private cars
More walking/cycling routes

In reality this won't happen; people will continue to be unfit and fit people will continue to be expected to pay the price...

The media don't care about mental health or physical wellbeing; suicides go unreported so they can concentrate on Covid deaths to justify making us all less fit and more depressed.

I despair.

Pretty much everyone I know at work has put on weight. I’ve managed to avoid the worst of it as fortunately my job has opportunities for me to incorporate moderate forms of exercise into it. Some of the shielding people in particular have put on a lot of weight. Not good.
 

Bertie the bus

Established Member
Joined
15 Aug 2014
Messages
1,865
The only way to make the country more healthy is to bring back the concept of personal responsibility. It's not as though we haven't been warned and nagged constantly about our lifestyles and diets, it's just it is always somebody else's fault. A good example is obesity, eat less rubbish and do some exercise but the self-professed experts always blame the manufacturers for putting too much salt or sugar in foods. The latter is a contributing factor but the only one that will have a profound effect is to get individuals to take some responsibility and cut out all the nonsense about body shaming. Blobs the size of a house should be shamed and ashamed.
 
Last edited:

bramling

Veteran Member
Joined
5 Mar 2012
Messages
13,655
Location
Hertfordshire / Teesdale
The only way to make the country more healthy is to bring back the concept of personal responsibility. It's not as though we haven't been warned and nagged constantly about our lifestyles and diets, it's just it is always somebody else's fault. A good example is obesity, eat less rubbish and do some exercise but the self-professed experts always blame the manufacturers for putting too much salt or sugar in foods. The latter is a contributing factor but the only one that will have a profound effect is to get individuals to take some responsibility.

Okay, I’d like to be able to do more exercise, and normally I do a *lot* over the summer. How can I do that when I am supposed to stay at home except for a finite quantity of exercise in my local area? I don’t wish to walk round and round my town as I will be breathing in motor fumes which isn’t good for me, if I go into the countryside pretty much every path is now a complete quagmire. Over the last week I’ve worked 64 hours so opportunities for meaningful exercise have been limited, and where they have (unofficially) arisen it’s been pouring with rain, or the ground covered in ice (and from other threads we shouldn’t be undertaking any activity which might make us a burden on the health service...)

I’m afraid I do blame Boris for this, as last year I’d have had four or more active outdoors holidays which would have incorporated a considerable amount of outdoors physical activity, none of which would have been a Covid risk to anyone.
 
Joined
26 Apr 2017
Messages
1,073
Location
West Yorkshire
I’ve coined my own sound bite - It’s not the National Health Service that’s in trouble, it’s the nation’s health.

If we do see authoritarianism in health policy then I sincerely hope that it will be used to crackdown on this country’s unsustainable obesity problem - 28% of adults are obese and 36% are overweight which is another way of saying that a third of all adults have a pre-existing and life shortening condition. Not to mention to financial benefits of having a healthier population that is less likely to go into hospital.

As for achieving better health, some of the solutions further up thread seem plausible, but I’d also like to add other suggestions such as adding more vitamins to food and decentralising the NHS to better combat localised issues such as members of the BAME community being more susceptible to serious diseases than their White Caucasian counterparts (a problem that if more important in Bradford than Cornwall for example).

This talk about deteriorating mental health sounds like a good argument for legislating and properly regulating and taxing recreational cannabis.
 

brad465

Established Member
Joined
11 Aug 2010
Messages
3,285
Location
Maidstone
I am rather dreading the future of public health policy, to be honest. The response to the current virus has opened the door to much more aggressive authoritarianism going forward.

I would not be surprised if "unhealthy" food was banned entirely, for example. Or possibly made to use plain packaging as seen with cigarettes. It sounds ridiculous now, but the current crisis has set a precedent. I expect that from now on, public health types can just say that something saves lives, and it will be done.
There was a time in 2019 from memory some health "expert" suggested unhealthy food be banned on public transport that is not too dissimilar to what you're saying here. I do think though for as long as a Tory/Libertarian Government is in power, there will be limits to such food restrictions: taxation has been and could well be applied more in future, but I think any attempts to ban things would face rebellion and discord with their voter base. Yes Covid has blown it all out of proportion, but I don't think everybody who's been demanding such strong restrictions for Covid would either have the same interest for junk food restrictions, nor the same clout to be able to do so.
The only way to make the country more healthy is to bring back the concept of personal responsibility. It's not as though we haven't been warned and nagged constantly about our lifestyles and diets, it's just it is always somebody else's fault. A good example is obesity, eat less rubbish and do some exercise but the self-professed experts always blame the manufacturers for putting too much salt or sugar in foods. The latter is a contributing factor but the only one that will have a profound effect is to get individuals to take some responsibility and cut out all the nonsense about body shaming. Blobs the size of a house should be shamed and ashamed.
The media has been allowed to effectively take all responsibility away from us. They do the thinking now, with their relentless advertising and news' agendas, especially for those not well educated. I think the best way to ensure better personal responsibility to make initiatives for more responsible parenting, and in particular mandate/expand critical thinking teaching in schools and in workplaces, to help people see through narratives.

With regards to overall public health policy, there is one subject that is too dangerous to talk about despite the fact it is reality: "nothing is certain but death and taxes". Emphasis on the death factor here, we will all die at some point whether we like it or not, and trying to prolong someone's life opens the door to other health problems that may not otherwise be an issue, thinking in particular of Dementia/Parkinson's/Alzheimer's and more cases of cancer than would otherwise be the case. There are certainly many benefits to healthy eating and if greater initiatives reduce the burden on healthcare services, both in terms of financial cost and physical capacity taken up, then it definitely should be encouraged more, and I do believe this is likely. However we have to realise that sometimes living longer does more harm than good, and must be the subject of a debate very few have the courage to start (although countries planning to make assisted dying legal in terminal illness instances, like NZ and Spain have effectively had that debate to an extent).
 

Cowley

Forum Staff
Staff Member
Global Moderator
Joined
15 Apr 2016
Messages
11,452
Location
Devon
I think that our diets are massively over complicated and the food is way more processed than for previous generations.
It always seems to me that we take 3 steps forward and 2.5 steps back where it comes to living healthily in this country. We have the ability and wealth to live an incredibly healthy life compared to much of the world, but we’re our own worst enemies unfortunately.
 

XAM2175

Established Member
Joined
8 Jun 2016
Messages
1,502
Location
Glasgow
... people will continue to be unfit and fit people will continue to be expected to pay the price ...
The response to the current virus has opened the door to much more aggressive authoritarianism going forward.
I'm curious here as to the parallels with some of the other 'vices' like alcohol and tobacco, and especially given the very strong libertarian sentiment expressed in this forum - is it the case that unhealthy diet and exercise habits should be countered from a public health perspective with better options and perhaps even incentives for people to make their own improvements, or with regulation and strong disincentivisation, even going as far as punitive measures?

Or perhaps the worst of all worlds:
the only one that will have a profound effect is to get individuals to take some responsibility and cut out all the nonsense about body shaming. Blobs the size of a house should be shamed and ashamed.
(which, for the avoidance of doubt, is singularly ineffective at improving physical health but yet extraordinarily effective at shredding mental health)
 

HSTEd

Veteran Member
Joined
14 Jul 2011
Messages
13,848
Obesity is not going to destroy the NHS, it costs a tiny fraction of it's budget even now.

Even if everyone was obese the cost was easily affordable.

And obesity is simply being used as a scapegoat to try and avoid admitting the truth - the Baby Boomers have thrown everyone else under the bus in a selfish attempt to cling to life for another few more years
 
Last edited:

takno

Established Member
Joined
9 Jul 2016
Messages
3,707
I think that our diets are massively over complicated and the food is way more processed than for previous generations.
It always seems to me that we take 3 steps forward and 2.5 steps back where it comes to living healthily in this country. We have the ability and wealth to live an incredibly healthy life compared to much of the world, but we’re our own worst enemies unfortunately.
I think a lot of the problem is that the dietary advice being pushed by public health experts over the past 30 years have been appalling. The obsession with fat and salt as being wicked and terrible has just resulted in a nation obsessed with eating and drinking bucket loads of sugar and starch. They've even been led to believe that endless sugar-filled fruit is actually good for them.

This talk about deteriorating mental health sounds like a good argument for legislating and properly regulating and taxing recreational cannabis.
I've been feeling for a while like this lockdown is basically just Brave New World, but enacted by a government that's too cheap to provide the drugs
 

yorksrob

Veteran Member
Joined
6 Aug 2009
Messages
30,343
Location
Yorks
I am rather dreading the future of public health policy, to be honest. The response to the current virus has opened the door to much more aggressive authoritarianism going forward.

I would not be surprised if "unhealthy" food was banned entirely, for example. Or possibly made to use plain packaging as seen with cigarettes. It sounds ridiculous now, but the current crisis has set a precedent. I expect that from now on, public health types can just say that something saves lives, and it will be done.

Indeed. I think I've opined this before, but I think we'll see more reduction in salt and sugar from staple foods such as baked beans etc, whuch have never been particularly unhealthy. This will ultimately have a detrimental effect as the more you make healthy staple foods taste like cardboard, the more people will reach for the takeaway and the chocolate bar.

I'd managed to maintain my regime of walking and not too strenuous exercise up until the Christmas period, but the lockdown extremists have now seen to that.
 

duncanp

Established Member
Joined
16 Aug 2012
Messages
2,549
Location
Birmingham/Smethwick
And obesity is simply being used as a scapegoat to try and avoid admitting the truth - the Baby Boomers have thrown everyone else under the bus in a selfish attempt to cling to life for another few more years

Absolute tosh - have you any evidence to back this assertion up?
 

Jamiescott1

Member
Joined
22 Feb 2019
Messages
477
Not answering your question directly but the culture in this country to healthy lifestyle is terrible.
Lunchtime at work: other countries I've worked in, people take their lunch to work in tupperware. Here it's out to pret, eat, m&s, itsu, boots for prepacked food.

Lack of home cooking: We have so many cook in sauces like dolmio, lloyd groseman etc. Shops like Iceland - full of processed cheap rubbish.

Lack of outdoor excercise. This has changed a bit during lockdown.

High Street takeaways: all over the world I've been including having lived in America, I've never seen so many shops selling cheap nasty unhealthy foods such as chicken, awful burgers, more chicken and unauthentic kebabs. America is not a great example as they are more obese than us but at least their takeaways have variety, its not just rows of identical chicken shops.

The culture of not letting kids out to play: this seems to have changed. When I was younger we were all out on our bikes, coming home when the street lights come on.

Terrible cycling lanes and facilities for excercise: yes we have good parks but not much other facilities
 

DustyBin

Established Member
Joined
20 Sep 2020
Messages
1,826
Location
First Class
As a nation, we've taken actions that benefit the geriatric members of society, to the detriment of all others?

We have, but I’m not convinced it’s the main ‘beneficiaries’ who are actually calling for these actions (some obviously will be). The older people I know are absolutely fed up and want to get on with life, and openly express concern over the future of the younger generations. Even the ones who are slightly scared would be willing to lock themselves away and wait to be vaccinated if it meant everybody else could get back to something resembling normality. I’m also not sure that it’s old people posting drivel on social media (I could be wrong).

I won’t fall for the divide and conquer strategy being pursued by the government, and I see this as part of that to be honest.
 

yorkie

Forum Staff
Staff Member
Administrator
Joined
6 Jun 2005
Messages
55,832
Location
Yorkshire
@Jamiescott1 some very good points there.

Sadly I do not think the lack of outdoor exercise has got much better during lockdown. True, for some people it has, and it's probably true that last Spring/Summer there were more people out for walks than normal and to some extent that can still be the case this Winter. But there are so many sporting activities (most of which are far more rigorous and therefore more beneficial than walking) not able to take place.

For example I would be playing football 5 hours per week if we had not closed sports centres (a disgraceful act on the part of the pro-restriction authoritarians) and there is no way I am getting that amount of exercise, even if I may be more visibly doing so, by walking. If you think of all the people who would be playing sports in sports/leisure centres and that none of them are able to do so, any visible increase in people walking is partly down to people replacing other activities with walking.

There are also people who try to claim that people should only do boring walks along often crowded pavements near where they live, and that there should be time limits and not more than once per day and other such nonsense, in order to ostensibly protect predominantly obese and elderly people. I find this to be utterly outrageous and disgraceful.

I tried to organise a sporting activity for vulnerable/disadvantage kids during lockdown and this was rejected, so those kids who are in school do no physical activity at all. And then people wonder why their behaviour isn't great.

I can't see anything changing; this country does not care about getting people healthier; indeed people are actively discouraged from being healthy right now.
 

ExRes

Established Member
Joined
16 Dec 2012
Messages
3,768
Location
Back in Sussex
One thing that seems to be overlooked by most is the simple precaution known as personal hygiene. Since going on my first cruise ship 10 years ago I've been astounded at the lengths people will go to to avoid taking responsibility for their hygiene such as deliberately trying to avoid using hand sanitiser, on my very first ship there were boxes of hand tissues fixed to the inside of the entry/exit doors to the toilets, all you had to was use one and deposit it in the bin provided, but no, many would use the toilets, not wash their hands and then use door handles, banister rails, pick up cutlery and plates, food even, with no regard for what they were leaving behind, the easy excuse for them of course was to blame the cruise line for rampant norovirus outbreaks

Since that time I've watched people who use public toilets in shops, restaurants, motorway service areas etc etc and I've been absolutely disgusted by the complete lack of hygiene by a majority, and I mean majority, until people learn basic hygiene we haven't got a hope in hell of stopping viruses from going where and doing what they want

And obesity is simply being used as a scapegoat to try and avoid admitting the truth - the Baby Boomers have thrown everyone else under the bus in a selfish attempt to cling to life for another few more years

Total rubbish, "baby boomers" have done nothing, not in this country or any other, Governments have made the decisions here and all over the world, try putting the responsibility where it belongs
 

Bikeman78

Established Member
Joined
26 Apr 2018
Messages
2,832
Since that time I've watched people who use public toilets in shops, restaurants, motorway service areas etc etc and I've been absolutely disgusted by the complete lack of hygiene by a majority, and I mean majority, until people learn basic hygiene we haven't got a hope in hell of stopping viruses from going where and doing what they want
I'm no fan of hand sanitiser but I do wash my hands frequently. I agree that many people do not wash their hands after using public toilets. That is still the case now, including one of the Covid one way system enforcers at Liverpool Central station!

On a wider note, most people in the UK seem to drive everywhere. Doesn't do much for the health of the nation. Difficult to see how that will change because most people live outwith walking or cycling distance from work.
 

NorthOxonian

Established Member
Joined
5 Jul 2018
Messages
1,248
Location
Oxford/Newcastle
On a wider note, most people in the UK seem to drive everywhere. Doesn't do much for the health of the nation. Difficult to see how that will change because most people live outwith walking or cycling distance from work.
Especially considering the way public transport has been demonised throughout the crisis (using public transport is a little better for health than using cars, though of course not nearly as good as using active transport for the whole journey).
 

DB

Guest
Joined
18 Nov 2009
Messages
5,036
Especially considering the way public transport has been demonised throughout the crisis (using public transport is a little better for health than using cars, though of course not nearly as good as using active transport for the whole journey).

And it's quite noticeable when travelling for work (by train), the trains are still pretty quiet whereas the adjacent roads are not.
 

yorksrob

Veteran Member
Joined
6 Aug 2009
Messages
30,343
Location
Yorks
High Street takeaways: all over the world I've been including having lived in America, I've never seen so many shops selling cheap nasty unhealthy foods such as chicken, awful burgers, more chicken and unauthentic kebabs. America is not a great example as they are more obese than us but at least their takeaways have variety, its not just rows of identical chicken shops.

We have a Taco Bell in Leeds now, which is slightly more exotic than the usual fast food fare.

In truth, I can't be arsed making my own sandwiches when going to the office, and when making them for home working I get very bored of them.
 

yorkie

Forum Staff
Staff Member
Administrator
Joined
6 Jun 2005
Messages
55,832
Location
Yorkshire
I believe that exercise (or lack of) is much more of an issue than what we eat; within reason, of course!

Not only that but I find being active actually makes me less likely to feel hungry.

Eating out is not a problem providing you don't make totally unreasonable choices and providing you do sufficient exercise.

Unfortunately the proportion of the population that does adequate exercise is very much in the minority, and it is that which is the fundamental problem here.
 

Bantamzen

Established Member
Joined
4 Dec 2013
Messages
7,600
Location
Baildon, West Yorkshire
We have a Taco Bell in Leeds now, which is slightly more exotic than the usual fast food fare.

In truth, I can't be arsed making my own sandwiches when going to the office, and when making them for home working I get very bored of them.
Never mind Taco <bleh> Bell, we have a German Donner Kebab store in Bradford now! :D

(For those unaware, the kebab as we know it here was invented by a Turkish take away owner in Germany.
 

yorksrob

Veteran Member
Joined
6 Aug 2009
Messages
30,343
Location
Yorks
Never mind Taco <bleh> Bell, we have a German Donner Kebab store in Bradford now! :D

(For those unaware, the kebab as we know it here was invented by a Turkish take away owner in Germany.

What's the wurst that could happen !
 

Mintona

Established Member
Joined
8 Jan 2006
Messages
3,495
Location
South West
I’m obese and have been since I was a child. I’m nearly 31 now.

Still, I’ve just ran 12 miles, so I don’t think I’m overly unhealthy.
 

takno

Established Member
Joined
9 Jul 2016
Messages
3,707
Not answering your question directly but the culture in this country to healthy lifestyle is terrible.
Lunchtime at work: other countries I've worked in, people take their lunch to work in tupperware. Here it's out to pret, eat, m&s, itsu, boots for prepacked food.

Lack of home cooking: We have so many cook in sauces like dolmio, lloyd groseman etc. Shops like Iceland - full of processed cheap rubbish.

Lack of outdoor excercise. This has changed a bit during lockdown.

High Street takeaways: all over the world I've been including having lived in America, I've never seen so many shops selling cheap nasty unhealthy foods such as chicken, awful burgers, more chicken and unauthentic kebabs. America is not a great example as they are more obese than us but at least their takeaways have variety, its not just rows of identical chicken shops.

The culture of not letting kids out to play: this seems to have changed. When I was younger we were all out on our bikes, coming home when the street lights come on.

Terrible cycling lanes and facilities for excercise: yes we have good parks but not much other facilities
We make some unhealthy choices in this country, but I'm not sure I recognise your characterisation.

It's hardly particularly unusual for people in the UK to take a prepacked lunch - it's perhaps less common in city centre office jobs where there's a ready supply of shops which are open, but that isn't where and how most people work. From a health perspective anyway, pre-packed lunches are most often formed of sandwiches made of processed bread, and often filled with slabs of cheese. A freshly-prepared salad or protein box from Pret, or almost anything from Itsu will be healthier than that. Even the sandwiches from the mentioned places are unlikely to worse than anything you put together yourself, and have accurate nutritional information on them so that you can make more informed choices about diet.

I think almost everybody I know cooks the majority of their meals at home. It's certainly more common than in North America, and not a great deal different from most of the rest of Europe. Apart from often having fairly high salt levels and not being at all to my taste, there's very little wrong with cook-in-sauces, and most people home-cooking end up adding the same amount of salt anyway. In spite of your pearl-clutching about affordable food shops, the food in Iceland is just as healthy as the food elsewhere, it just tends to be a bit cheaper, often slightly less premium ingredients and frozen to help avoid wastage.

One of the worst problems we have in the UK is that we've trained a lot of the middle class to associate home-cooking, fruit and expensive ingredients with health. Combined with years of demonising fat and doing nothing about sugar we've created a couple of generations of people who will literally do all the wrong things to improve their diets, and then turn their nose up at practical affordable solutions to their problems
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Top