Today is Monday. It is the start of the new week. It is a good day to start being healthy. Take one day to be healthy. Just one day a week. On this day, you should think about your health. Refrain from smoking. Go for a walk. Eat fruit and vegetables. And maybe by the end of this Monday, you’ll ask yourself, if you managed to do it for a day, why not do it again the next day? Before you know it, the week is over and it has been a healthy week for you. This is the principle behind the Healthy Monday movement.
Healthy Monday is a public health initiative founded in 2005 in association with the Mailman School, Johns Hopkins University, and Syracuse University, Healthy Monday aims no less than to end preventable disease in the U.S.
The Healthy Monday campaign has rapidly gained a strong following, including the American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, and American Cancer Society, academic institutions, not-for-profit organizations, and some of the big names in corporate America. Then its popularity crossed geographical borders to be adapted by political leaders in the European Union and international celebrities like Paul McCartney.
In New York, Healthy Monday is being promoted by the Harlem Health Promotion Center, a prevention research centers funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and actively works in the Harlem and Northern Manhattan areas.
According to Dr. Alwyn Cohall, director of the Harlem Health Promotion Center and professor of Clinical Sociomedical Sciences and Population and Family Health:
“Behavior change takes time and incremental steps – sometimes three steps forward and two steps back. Healthy Monday lets people know that they can be forgiven for falling off the wagon; that the key thing is to keep trying and keep those health goals in front of you.”
That is the beauty of Healthy Monday. Even if you failed to follow your resolution during the week (and everybody fails from time to time!), there is always a Monday coming up wherein you can start anew and try as best as you could.
And it is something you can do as an individual and as a group. Now, there are people out there who would like to give healthy living a go but are too scared to try or too embarrassed to fail. Now, Healthy Monday is something you can try without announcing it to the whole world. On the other hand, once you get that good start, it would be fun to do it with family and friends.
Today is Monday. A really good day to start trying to be healthy. Let’s go!