ERIC Number: EJ792826
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005
Reference Count: 24
The Meaning of Health
Balog, Joseph E.
American Journal of Health Education, v36 n5 p266-271 Sep-Oct 2005
Many health educators view health as a subjective, comprehensive and multidimensional construct, such as the WHO concept that defines health as a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. This paper, through a philosophical analysis, demonstrates that health is not multi-dimensional and is a natural phenomenon. A philosophical discussion contends that health must realistically and logically reside in the person and this requires it to be a physical state. This paper also illustrates that in the language of health, many health educators: (1) confuse what is desired and valued as a good life to mean what is good health; (2) fail to recognize the vital distinction between what affects health and what is health; and (3) inappropriately view health as a subjective human construct as opposed to viewing health as an objective phenomenon. To stimulate discussion, a philosophical analysis of health is presented about the meaning of health. This view argues that health is a state of physical well-being or physical fitness that is defined by how well the body is functioning in accordance with its natural design and how well this natural design affords individuals the ability to achieve essential functional objectives of humans on a biological and "person" level.
Descriptors: Physical Fitness, Health Education, Educational Philosophy, Well Being, Definitions, Semantics, Pragmatics, Living Standards, Quality of Life, Social Indicators, Health
American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. 1900 Association Drive, Reston, VA 20191. Tel: 800-213-7193; Fax: 703-476-9527; e-mail: email@example.com; Web site: http://www.aahperd.org
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A