A Government backed report warns mental health to worsen in the general population as the economic downturn impacts on people’s lives. This combined with the fact that mental health illnesses is set to increase as the population ages make grim reading about our psychological states.
The report, The Foresight Project on Mental Capital and Wellbeing drew advice from over 400 international experts and examines the experiences and lifestyle factors that can either boost or diminish mental wellbeing throughout life.
Mental health already costs over £70bn in England alone, with almost another £50bn in direct costs to the economy. According to the report 16% of the population of Britian suffer from mental health illnesses, compared to half of all those in debt! As the UK plunges into a recession with rising unemployment and increasing financial pressures on families and individuals, it is serious concern how people will cope with increased stress and insecurity.
According to the report, a proposed campaign, similar to “five portions of fruit and vegetables a day” guidelines promoted by the Food Standards Agency, has identified five actions that people can take to boost their mental health:
Exercise or being physically active;
Fostering curiosity about the world;
Continuing education throughout life;
Doing voluntary work.
Although, stress has been identified by the report as a major and of of the key contributor to mental health illness, yet, surprisingly, in the face of over 600 acedemic studies all identying Meditation as one of the most effective method for managing stress appear to be conspiciously missing.
Meditation (by Dav Panesar)
Symran (by Dav Panesar)
Ref: The Foresight Project on Mental Capital and Wellbeing