Most of us (ladies) are familiar with “visits to the gynae”, the medical specialist referred to as obstetrician and gynaecologist (O&G). However, not many of us really know the profession’s jurisdictional distinction in the ‘grey area’ of the female reproductory system. While the obstetrician attends to specifically pregnant patients, the gynaecologist treats non-childbirth cases. I only discovered this disparity after chatting up a fellow participant (a O&G) at a recent seminar organized by The Malaysian Wellness Society.
The Wellness event, centering on “Prevention is better than Cure”, provided me with a wealth of knowledge dispensed by various doctors and health experts. It was truly a crash course on healthy living during which myths as well as some traditional beliefs were debunked and natural back-to-basic values inculcated. I came away with a better awareness of the wellness concept that is based on mental, physical and social well-being.
Certainly, a change in my lifestyle (read: dietary habits) is long overdue. For a start, I need to refrain from eating big meals (especially, my staple of noodles) and quit banking on my ‘high metabolism rate’ as an excuse to binge. Either that or face the dire, far-reaching consequences of suffering from diabetes, ‘heartburn’, obesity et al. However, I can still indulge in my ‘live to eat’ philosophy by adopting the Balance-Moderation-Variation principle. So, the occasional all-you-can-eat buffets and multi-course dinners are still all right, with restraint.
Next, I should remember to consume my fruits before (instead of after) mealtimes to ensure better absorption of water-soluble Vitamin C. My frugality-driven fetish for finishing up leftover foods should stop if I want to have proper nutrition for my aging system.
On the subject of age, I can now revel in the fact that our chronological age does not necessarily reflect our biological age. Apparently, staying youthful (and active) helps combat illnesses and promotes longevity while enhancing our dwindling self-esteem. So I should happily remain ‘young at heart’, keeping tabs on contemporary issues and trends.
Naturally, exercise plays a vital role in contributing to our general health. Regular physical activity not only burns off excess fat but also boosts blood circulation and strengthens bone structures. I am glad to have finally jumped on the fitness bandwagon by joining the neighborhood line-dancing, ‘Xiang Gung’ and Yoga teams. For one who is averse to sports and physical exertion, it was at first torture to get my stiff body to move with the groove, suffering muscle aches for weeks. Then, there is the drudgery of having to leave the house before dawn, foregoing the (post-‘retirement’) luxury of extra sleep.
Work-out aside, I bask in the easy camaraderie among fellow enthusiasts (mainly women) whose ages range from thirties to seventies. Our exchange of anecdotes and banter coupled with the occasional tips plus gossip makes for effective networking! In addition to this pleasant prelude to my usual ‘home alone’ schedule, I also look forward to our frequent group outings in support of local tourism as well as holiday trips out of the country.
Just as the wellness experts prescribe, time spent with family and friends is essential for bonding, relaxation – therapy for the soul. In our pursuit of career cum livelihood, we often place emphasis on monetary and social achievement over emotional needs. Somehow, we are too busy to look into the welfare of our loved ones, relegating the tasks to extended parents or helpers. Sadly, it is only when tragedy strikes in the form of death or terminal illness that we come to our senses. Fortunately, for me, I was given the opportunity to choose between corporate and personal life. Despite my initial misgivings (over loss of income), I am glad to have made my choice in giving up decades of working life. Now, I am free to do as I please (no more last minute deadlines, ever-elusive goals, and “yes-sir/ma’am” scenarios) and have my own self-controlled family-oriented life without ‘accountability to the Boss’.
While it is important to pay attention to our physical well-being, it is equally – in fact even more – imperative to take care of our mental health. I cannot over-emphasize the necessity of managing stress in our modern (materialistic) society. The loss of a younger sibling to cancer and recent deterioration in health of family members have made me realized the futility of priority on financial security at the expense of personal life. Having and taking the time to ‘smell the roses’ was one of my reasons for opting to quit the rat-race. My belief in ‘Health is Wealth’ is readily reaffirmed and shared by The Malaysian Wellness Society and its growing coterie.
Malaysian Wellness Society Seminar & Exhibition