Iran J Public Health, Vol. 44, No.11, Nov 2015, pp.1442-1444 Editorial
1442 Available at: http://ijph.tums.ac.ir
Impact of Lifestyle on Health
*Dariush D. FARHUD
1. School of Public Health, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
2. Dept. of Basic Sciences, Iranian Academy of Medical Sciences ,Tehran, Iran
*Correspondence: Email: email@example.com
(Received 12 Oct 2015; accepted 22 Oct 2015)
Lifestyle is a way used by people, groups and na-
tions and is formed in specific geographical, eco-
nomic, political, cultural and religious text. Life-
style is referred to the characteristics of inhabit-
ants of a region in special time and place. It in-
cludes day to day behaviors and functions of indi-
viduals in job, activities, fun and diet.
In recent decades, life style as an important factor
of health is more interested by researchers. Ac-
cording to WHO, 60% of related factors to indi-
vidual health and quality of life are correlated to
lifestyle (1). Millions of people follow an un-
healthy lifestyle. Hence, they encounter illness,
disability and even death. Problems like metabolic
diseases, joint and skeletal problems, cardio-vascu-
lar diseases, hypertension, overweight, violence
and so on, can be caused by an unhealthy lifestyle.
The relationship of lifestyle and health should be
Today, wide changes have occurred in life of all
people. Malnutrition, unhealthy diet, smoking, al-
cohol consuming, drug abuse, stress and so on,
are the presentations of unhealthy life style that
they are used as dominant form of lifestyle. Be-
sides, the lives of citizens face with new challenges.
For instance, emerging new technologies within
IT such as the internet and virtual communication
networks, lead our world to a major challenge that
threatens the physical and mental health of indi-
viduals. The challenge is the overuse and misuse
of the technology.
Therefore, according to the existing studies, it can
be said that: lifestyle has a significant influence on
physical and mental health of human being. There
are different forms of such influences. Consangu-
inity in some ethnicity is a dominant form of life
style that it leads to the genetic disorders. Refor-
mation of this unhealthy life style is a preventing
factor for decreasing the rate of genetic diseases
(2). In some countries, the overuse of drugs is a
major unhealthy life style. Iran is one of the 20
countries using the most medications. They prefer
medication to other intervention. Furthermore, in
15-40% of cases they use medications about with-
out prescription (3). Pain relievers, eye drops and
antibiotics have the most usage in Iran. While self-
medications such as antibiotics have a negative
effect on the immune system, if the individual
would be affected by infection, antibiotics will not
be effective in treatment. Overall, 10 percent of
those who are self-medicated will experience se-
vere complications such as drug resistance. Some-
times drug allergy is so severe that it can cause
Finally, variables of lifestyle that influence on
health can be categorized in some items:
1- Diet and Body Mass Index (BMI): Diet
is the greatest factor in lifestyle and has a
direct and positive relation with health.
DD Farhud: Impact of Lifestyle on Health
Available at: http://ijph.tums.ac.ir 1443
Poor diet and its consequences like obesity
is the common healthy problem in urban
societies. Unhealthy lifestyle can be meas-
ured by BMI. Urban lifestyle leads to the
nutrition problems like using fast foods
and poor foods, increasing problems like
2- Exercise: For treating general health
problems, the exercise is included in life
style (6). The continuous exercise along
with a healthy diet increases the health.
Some studies stress on the relation of ac-
tive life style with happiness (7, 8).
3- Sleep: One of the bases of healthy life is
the sleep. Sleep cannot be apart from life.
Sleep disorders have several social, psy-
chological, economical and healthy conse-
quences. Lifestyle may effect on sleep and
sleep has a clear influence on mental and
physical health (9).
4- Sexual behavior: Normal sex relation is
necessary in healthy life. Dysfunction of
sex relation is the problem of most of so-
cieties and it has a significant effect on
mental and physical health. It can be said
that dysfunctional sex relation may result
in various family problems or sex related
illnesses like; AIDS
5- Substance abuse: Addiction is consid-
ered as an unhealthy life style. Smoking
and using other substance may result in
various problems; cardiovascular disease,
asthma, cancer, brain injury. According to
the resent studies in Iran, 43% of females
and 64% of males experience the use of
hubble-bubble (10). A longitudinal study
shows that 30% of people between 18-65
years old smoke cigarette permanently (11).
6- Medication abuse: It is a common form
of using medication in Iran and it is con-
sidered as an unhealthy life style. Un-
healthy behaviors in using medication are
as followed: self-treatment, sharing medi-
cation, using medications without pre-
scription, prescribing too many drugs, pre-
scribing the large number of each drug,
unnecessary drugs, bad handwriting in
prescription, disregard to the contradictory
drugs, disregard to harmful effects of
drugs, not explaining the effects of drugs.
7- Application of modern technologies:
Advanced technology facilitates the life of
human beings. Misuse of technology may
result in unpleasant consequences. For ex-
ample, using of computer and other de-
vices up to midnight, may effect on the
pattern of sleep and it may disturb sleep.
Addiction to use mobile phone is related
to depression symptoms (12).
8- Recreation: Leisure pass time is a sub
factor of life style. Neglecting leisure can
bring negative consequences. With disor-
ganized planning and unhealthy leisure,
people endanger their health.
9- Study: Study is the exercise of soul. Plac-
ing study as a factor in lifestyle may lead to
more physical and mental health. For ex-
ample, prevalence of dementia, such as
Alzheimer's disease is lowerin educated
people. Study could slow process of de-
With a look at existing studies in health domain, 9
key factors can be suggested for healthy life style
(Fig. 1). In regard to each factor, the systematic
planning in micro and macro level can be estab-
lished. It can provide a social and individual
The authors declare that there is no conflict of
Iran J Public Health, Vol. 44, No.11, Nov 2015, pp.1442-1444
1444 Available at: http://ijph.tums.ac.ir
Fig. 1: Nine key factors that forming healthy life style
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