Today, World Health Day, marks the launch of our second annual Health Yourself campaign. The theme of this year’s World Health Day is universal health coverage. At Bayer, we recognise the importance of health coverage by supporting all Australian’s to thrive through the practice of self-care and regularly consulting with qualified healthcare professionals to proactively manage their own health.
Therefore, this year’s Health Yourself campaign aims to break down barriers to self-care and promote self-care best practice to ensure improved wellbeing and prevention of illness amongst all Australians. We are tasking Aussies to turn self-sabotage into self-care!
Self-care is a multifaceted approach to health and wellbeing, which focuses on the following areas: nutrition, mental health, physical health, health screening and risk avoidance. Australians can support healthier lifestyles by adopting daily self-care practice that addresses each of these pillars.
An apple a day keeps the doctor away
Optimal nutrition is a fundamental element of the practice of self-care. From weight management to improved energy and focus to disease prevention and more, the benefits of choosing high quality, fresh and healthy foods can’t be denied.
For this reason, we have partnered with Nutrition Australia for this year’s Health Yourself campaign, to provide tips on improved nutrition. Recent research shows that only 4% of Australians eat adequate serves of vegetables. We are supporting Nutrition Australia’s TryFor5 education campaign to increase awareness of the importance of vegetable consumption as part of a healthy diet.
We also aim to shine a light on the importance of mother and baby health. We have been working with Nutrition Australia to produce a resource for pregnant women and healthcare professionals to understand dietary requirements and address myths associated with nutrition in pregnancy.
Further to this, we believe that all Australians should have access to affordable, high quality, fresh food to make the decision to improve nutrition an easier one. We work closely with Aussie farmers and local agriculture bodies to develop innovative ways to increase crop yields and produce nutritious food for the nation.
Keeping self-care in mind
When was the last time you made a conscious effort to destress or took some much-needed time out? Important commitments, busy lifestyles and hectic routines often mean that self-care gets pushed to the bottom of the list. Taking care of our mental health is an incrementally important practice however, given its intangible nature, it is often all-too-easy to neglect – especially within the workplace.
At Bayer, we understand just how hard it can be to find the time to self-care whilst working. So, with this mind, we are partnering with experts during our Health Yourself campaign to offer practical tactics on how to practice self-care in the workplace to help manage stress levels.
Internally at Bayer, our employees receive ‘ME days’ which are five additional leave days to allow them to take time out for themselves. After all, a healthy team is a happy one! We believe in supporting self-care for our people so they can relax and replenish their minds and bodies.
Take the time to fit it in
According to our new Health Yourself research, Australians admit to frequently de-prioritising exercise as part of our daily routines. Although we are full of good intentions, we have mastered the art of making excuses to skip a workout. However, according the National Health Survey an alarming two thirds of Australian adults are overweight or obese – which means it’s time to make a change.
Exercise and physical activity can have incredible benefits for both physical and mental health. As well as being friendly to our waistlines, a good workout can lift your mood, make you feel more naturally energised and help to relieve stress, all of which are key fundamentals of an effective self-care strategy.
That’s why as part of our Health Yourself campaign we have asked our fitness specialists to share their tips on how to implement excuse-proof exercise regimes into our busy schedules. Our experts understand the constraints of time and budgets faced by Australians and so they aim to make exercise accessible for all.
Furthermore, we actively support the inspiring ‘Active Farmers’ organization, established to encourage farmers in rural communities to improve their physical and mental health through exercise. We believe that by supporting great causes like this we can improve the health and fitness of our nation and encourage all communities to prioritise exercise and self-care.
Calculating the risk
Self-care is a way of approaching management of health proactively, rather than reactively. Our Health Yourself campaign aims to encourage Australians to change their healthcare behavior now to reduce the risks of chronic disease that can be managed through lifestyle and diet changes. As part of the campaign, we are therefore highlighting ways that Australians can take advantage of the healthcare services that are available to them to screen for health problems and seek the right advice on how to stay healthy.
We have recently partnered with the Baker Institute to launch the ‘No Second Chances’ report, which raised awareness of the importance of secondary prevention in heart disease – which is currently Australia’s number one killer.
Additionally, by facilitating health screenings and assessments we believe that we can encourage Australians to proactively manage their health needs. For this reason, we have also teamed up the Heart of Australia to bring specialist cardiovascular services to remote communities where there is limited access to healthcare services. To date, this has helped to save the lives of 250 rural Australians through the early detection, diagnosis, and subsequent treatment of critical cardiac conditions.
We also support at-home health screening for women’s health, with the new Canesten Vaginal pH Self Test, which helps to empower women to self-diagnose common vaginal infections, like Thrush.
Now it’s your turn to Health Yourself!
We believe that by highlighting the principles of self-care and incorporating each pillar into daily routines, Australians can greatly improve their quality of life.
We want to lead by example in supporting self-care in all of our work, while simultaneously encouraging Australians to “Health Yourself” and pledge to look after their self-care every day.
So today we are asking you to tackle your challenges head-on and move from sabotage to self-care.