Which Tips for Health Really Matter?

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The politics of health are weighted with import, so finding a humorous take on a serious subject is rare indeed, but occasionally possible. Here, the Centre for Social Justice compares the politics of those frequent and helpful ‘personal’ health tips with the social determinants of health – and rubs the funny bone raw.

  • Don't smoke. If you can, stop. If you can't, cut down.

  • Follow a balanced diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables.

  • Keep physically active.

  • Manage stress by, for example, talking things through and making time to relax.

  • If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation.

  • Cover up in the sun, and protect children from sunburn.

  • Practice safer sex.

  • Take up cancer screening opportunities.

  • Be safe on the roads: follow the Highway Code.

  • Learn the First Aid ABC: airways, breathing, circulation.


  • Don't be poor. If you can, stop. If you can't, try not to be poor for long.

  • Don't have poor parents.

  • Own a car.

  • Don't work in a stressful, low paid manual job.

  • Don't live in damp, low quality housing.

  • Be able to afford to go on a holiday and sunbathe.

  • Practice not losing your job and don't become unemployed.

  • Take up all benefits you are entitled to, if you are unemployed, retired or sick or disabled.

  • Don't live next to a busy major road or near a polluting factory.

  • Learn how to fill in the complex housing benefit/shelter application forms before you become homeless and destitute.

For more information on the social determinants of health, visit The Centre for Social Justice, www.socialjustice.org