As we head into July I can just hear the collective sigh of relief now that our extended election campaign is over. It was a long haul and heaven knows how Americans cope with their seemingly endless presidential race.

Health care was uppermost during the campaign with calls for more money, more beds, more nurses, more doctors… Of course, it’s the time to be angling for the best deal from politicians ready to bargain but one conspicuous absence seemed to be calls for more responsibility in health care.

Our health budget is already enormous and can only balloon further with all the demands being placed upon it, a situation that’s completely unsustainable. Surely preventative medicine is an absolute must if we want to live longer, happier and healthier lives. And who doesn’t? Reining in this profligate expenditure is just a minor reason in comparison to the greater vitality, productivity and zest for life we’ll start to discover.

A case in point is a group which I attend a couple of times a week, the local bridge club. I know it’s scoffed at as a game for oldies but frankly many of the members leave others twenty years younger than them for dead in their mental acuity and love of life. As a person who’s always loved word games and puzzles, the challenge of bridge is right up there - I can understand how people become addicted!

One thing so many members have in common is their determination to stay sharp and connected well into their eighties and older. And, what’s struck me is that so many have been practising preventative health for all of their active lives. They cook real food, eat good fats, avoid processed short cuts, exercise, socialise, travel - and strain their brains at the bridge table whenever possible. In other words, they have fun and it’s infectious. While my learner level bridge is slowly improving against some cutthroat opposition, I’ve also gained greater confidence in my own views on what makes for a long healthy life - I’ve got so many examples around me that holistic lifestyles bring rewards.

One ray of hope in the electioneering was the emergence of the Health Australia Party with its focus on sustainable health (you’ll find it at https://www.facebook.com/Health-Australia-Party-1503863176578619/). It’s been our own mantra for the past 23 years and more and it’s heartening to see the first steps towards political support for something so vital for our community.

It’s been a tumultuous time elsewhere as well, most obviously of course in Great Britain with its vote to leave the EU. With this in mind, our lead feature this month, “Guideposts in a Changing World” by Perth psychologist Natalia Fidyka, offers some very practical and at the same time compassionate advice on how to deal with so much change happening all around us. We know many of our readers come to us for a sense of calm each month and I’m sure you’ll find her advice just what you need.

And being July, it’s that month when we’re urged to treat our liver kindly in Dry July. Holistic medical practitioner Dr Cris Beer gives great advice and two simple but delicious recipes to put your new knowledge into practice.

Enjoy the month ahead!

Margaret Evans

Margaret Evans has a background in teaching, journalism and publishing. She is the editor of NOVA Holistic Journal.

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