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Sunday, 1 July 2012

Nationalism, Patriotism, Connectedness and social support as health determinants. Happy Canada Day

Socialization plays an important role as a social determinant of health, it is multifaceted word.

At the individual level, married persons are healthier than those not married. Moreover recent loss of a spouse significantly increases risk for a poor health  outcome.

Persons with fewer than 3 non-family friends they would call on in a crisis are more vulnerable to poor health than those with larger social networks

Several school studies have shown that students that feel connected to their school environment thrive compared to their aloof companions.

In current Aboriginal reform processes, culture is a consistent health theme.  Those who demonstrate closer connection to their culture being healthier, and many social reforms proposed and in implementation are based on rebuilding reconnection as a foundation to health improvement, or as more aptly stated “healing”

Sure enough, there is some evidence that those that demonstrate higher levels of patriotism at a civic or national level also profess better health Huff post on patriotismMens Health on patriotism.   Two studies, (in one of those elusive pay per view journals), one looked at 130,000 people in 128 countries, the other at 40,000 in 31 countries (and potentially some overlap?).   Both studies made some interesting comments on how nationalism based on connection to values and institution bring stronger benefit than tradition or economic prosperity.  

So Happy Canada Day, Happy Independence Day, and numerous other national celebrations also occur at this time of the year to be acknowledged.  Celebrate safely in style and be sure to wear your heart on your sleeve. It is good for your health. 

Cheer your Olympians over the upcoming weeks.  A question we posed and did not get an answer – does global health improve over the duration of the Olympics, theoretically it is a time of manifest patriotism and beneficial?  Anyone with  knowledge of work done on this one truly pan-global expression of national pride and linking it to health, please send information to drphealth@gmail.com

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