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From health to well-being and healthy living in the built environments!
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October 27, 2021

From health to well-being and healthy living in the built environments!

Health is the status of a person´s physical and mental condition. Good health is about the mind as well as the body, i.e. feeling physically fit and feeling good about selves.

Well-being is the value of the quality of a person´s life. In other words, well-being is the state of being comfortable, healthy and happy.

However, what is the understanding of health, and what does well-being mean? And what is the relationship between health and well-being in the built environment?

Firstly, from health to well-being!

The meaning of health has evolved over time. Early definitions of health focused on the ability of the body to function properly, in other words: the health affected by disease and thus, mainly looking at the health from a medical perspective (anatomic, physiologic and psychological integrity).

“Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social being; and not merely the absence of disease and infirmity.” (WHO, 1948)

In 1946, the WHO proposed a new definition that aimed higher, i.e. linking health to well-being. And therefore, it puts more focus on all physical, mental and social well-being; and not merely the absence of illness and weakness.

“A resource for everyday life, not the objective of living. Health is a positive concept emphasizing social and personal resources, as well as physical capacities.” (WHO, 1986)

And further on to healthy living in the built environments!

Today, health and well-being are central to all lives of all people. Therefore, the goal is all about the dynamic relationships between the maintenance of health and the incorporation of well-being, i.e. the emphasis on healthy living and well-being in the built environments.

“Nowadays, the goal is to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all people and in all environments.” (Anonymous)

It is worth noting that the ideas about health and well-being can change over time and vary between different cultures and life stages.

Read more from other information channels!

History of health https://theworldbook.org/history-of-health/

The WHO Constitution https://www.who.int/about/governance/constitution

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