Even though we as humans share similarities in genetic makeup, there are factors that make our genetics different. There are many factors that influence our vulnerability to certain diseases. There are also many factors that play a role in how healthy you are in general. Genes play a definite role in these factors but there are also other factors outside of biology that make a difference.
This is obviously first on the list because we all know that our genetics play a big role in our health and predisposition to develop certain diseases. Genetics are being studied to see how scientists can possibly manipulate or change certain genes that cause disease. However, these manipulations are not possible yet and the original genetic makeup of a person cannot be changed. Several diseases are hereditary and not much can be done to prevent them from developing.
Many diseases like cancer, diabetes, and heart disease are related to lifestyle. This refers to the way people live, the things they do, the things they eat and drink, habits, etc. Things that are often linked with these diseases include smoking drug abuse, alcohol, and sleep-deprivation.
The environment in which we grow up and live can have very strong effects on our health. Factors like air quality, water quality, and climate are physical environmental factors. Psychological factors like abuse, depression, etc. also play a role. The environment in which we grow up has a direct effect on emotional, physical and mental development.
Socio-economic factors have to do with income and education and other related factors. People with more money can seek better healthcare and they tend to have a higher quality of life. However, people with money also often tend to be inactive and live sedentary lifestyles. People from lower socio-economic backgrounds may suffer from poor nutrition and water and air related diseases. Other factors like education and employment also influence health because it gives a person purpose and also teaches them what healthy practices are.
As you can see, health is not a simple thing. There are many factors that influence the health of a person and they work together or against each other. It is not simply genetics and it is not simply the environment. Instead, it is a combination of these factors and a whole list of sub-factors that influence a person’s physical development and health as well as the psychological health. Psychology plays a very big part in physical health. If a person is depressed or feels like they have no worth or no purpose, they will be unhappy and unhealthy. They will be less inclined to take care of themselves.
Healthy habits are important and so are genetics. However, you cannot do much about your genetics, but you can decide how you handle your environment and whether you will take better care of yourself or not.