Happy Saturday everyone! As things around us start to open up and life seems to be getting somewhat “normal” again, let’s think about what we’ve learned over the past few months.
COVID-19 is just one of many diseases, past and future, that will affect our world. We must take into account our health and our environment. We have been repeatedly warned of the health risks for anyone 60 years of age and over.
Globally, for the first time in 2018, the 65 and over age group outnumbered the under 5 age group. It is predicted that by 2050, this same older group will outnumber adolescents and young people aged 15 to 24. We are an aging world. This means that we must be better prepared to protect and serve this group of elderly and aging citizens.
Health at all ages should be taken more seriously. We cannot remain terrified of an illness. The coronavirus is a very debilitating disease. The healthier you are, the better your body will respond. Fast food, sugary drinks, excessive alcohol consumption, lack of exercise, and lack of sleep do not help our bodies defend themselves or age well. Smoking is something everyone should seriously think about quitting. Weak lungs and ventilator patients was something we also heard about. Unless you want to live in fear, you owe it to yourself to make these difficult but wiser choices.
In addition to being a healthier people, we also need our environment to be healthier. When so many people started working from home and drove less, we made our environment healthier, which made us and our little furry animals healthier.
You see, car exhaust contains particles of soot, nitrogen oxides, carbon monoxide, and carbon dioxide. All of these have dangerous effects on plants, animals and humans as well as carcinogenic effects on animals and humans. Car exhaust contains gases such as carbon dioxide which also contribute to global climate change. These gases trap heat in the atmosphere, creating a greenhouse effect that contributes to the warming of the Earth’s atmosphere, causing widespread climate change. You can read reports on changes seen in other countries as well as here in the United States. It has been predicted that in China alone, 77,000 lives have been saved by reducing vehicle emissions.
So let’s not drive so much. Don’t make so many trips to the store. Work from home if offered and you can. Eat better, exercise, drink more water, get enough sleep and the next pandemic may not have its effect.
To give. Lawyer. Volunteer. Live United.
Sherri M. Askren is President of United Way of Danville Area, Inc., 28 W. North St., Danville, IL 61832. Phone, 442-3512