As sociological studies show, for several years Moldova continues to be on the list of most unhappy countries. In 2008 Moldova was ranked on the 96th place of a total of 98, followed by Armenia and Zimbabwe. Lack of reasons for happiness may be the cause, as well as the outcome of many circumstances. The standard of living obviously influences a lot, but not less important is how healthy do we feel.
The findings of the research conducted by Magenta Consulting company in 2009, on a sample of 1400 respondents from 24 towns, revealed that the urban population estimates their health at an average level of 3.57 points on a scale from 1 to 5, where 1 stands for „I am very ill”, and 5 for „I feel absolutely healthy”.
What could be our health affected by? Age, level of happiness, type of activity, and of course the level of income we receive monthly, all these definitely influence the way we feel. Yet, the most obvious interdependence is settled between health and level of happiness.
Those who graded their level of happiness with 1 or 2 points (on a scale from 1 to 10), consider themselves as less healthy than those who estimated their level of happiness at 3-6 points. Most happy of all feel those who rated their level of health at an average of 4.3 of 5 possible. Of course, in this case the connection is not unidirectional. We feel happier when we are healthier and vice-versa. However, it is worth mentioning, as the medical practice has demonstrated, those people who are positive, optimists, who know how to enjoy life, feel healthier and recover faster after an illness.
Img. 1.1: Influence of health on man’s state of being, N=1300, points
People’s temper, habits, thinking pattern influences a lot of aspects, health being one of them. Communication with other people helps improve the mood, avoid depression, which results into a positive impact on one’s health. It is catchy that those preferring solitude more often feel less healthy than those who are inclined to spend time with a couple of friends or in big companies.
Our life is a constant rush; there is little time for private life, family: work, the way to the office and back, household chores all the time. There are very few people who manage to eat correctly and timely, sandwiches being the salvation from starvation most of the time. There are couple more issues to mention like using transport to get to work, sitting all day long on an office chair, and by the time you get home the only true desire is to grab some food and find a cozy spot in front of the TV, later falling asleep in the very same spot. Everyone knows that movement is life, but, nevertheless fatigue gets its way and there is no time, neither desire left to do any sports. It is interesting to state that, based on the research results, the ones that workout daily, be it at home or any other place, appreciated their health higher than those who don’t do any sports. Besides, those doing morning exercises, even at home, feel much happier than those who don’t care for exercise at all.
One can often hear a woman complaining about the fact that care for the children, cooking and cleaning after all family members leaves no energy, but it is not often that solitude makes someone happy. Humans are social beings. The research has also revealed that the families of four members are the happiest because in big families besides all hardships there is care for each other and happiness that is shared with all members. It is amazing but true that people coming from families with more than 4 members feel the healthiest. The average happiness level for the widowed and divorced is not high, and their estimation of health is not high either.
Age is an important factor influencing health. Thus, most healthy feel the young people aged 14-35 years (with an average for health ranging 3.95-4), while for the age group 35-44 this average decreases, and the respondents aged over 45 years feel healthy to the extent of 3.41 points.
None of the retired graded their health with a 5, most of them estimating it at the level of three. Other 35% think that their health level is not quite satisfactory and graded it with 1-2 points. It may be stated that a meaningful share of families with one member (widowed or divorced) – are families of retired, that don’t often appreciate their health as very good. Age and loneliness are a heavy burden. Meanwhile, the students represent a contrasting category to the aging one. It seems natural that every fifth of them feels at a 5, and other 57% grade their health with a “four”.
Over years financial independence comes but youth leaves. Money is important, but unfortunately it can’t buy us health. Nevertheless, a certain level of prosperity allows healthier eating, spending free time for leisure, instead of trying to earn extra money. Meanwhile, bad health does not always let you do a truly rewarding job. In such a way, among the respondents who earn less than 3000 MDL the level of health is lower than among those earning over 3000 MDL per month.
Conclusion about dependence, what the factor is and what the outcome is everyone will draw by himself. But, it is clear enough that: joy, happiness and health are interrelated. Maybe we should smile more often and enjoy the things that surround us as well as the people by our side, and it will keep us healthier.