If you think about it, health is a fairly selfish thing. Not that it is not a bad thing: bring healthy allows you to climb that mountain, go to work and make a difference and be a hero to your kids. Further, we also care (selfishly) about the health of those around us: family, friends, colleagues since they are possessive to us (my family, my friends and my colleagues)
But are we turning our altruistic health "selfishness" into more of a self-important "fetish"?
Looking at the graphs below we are able to see that global searches for the term "my health" are increasing, whereas the search term for "health is decreasing"
Specifically, total volume of searches for "My Health" are increasing, and quite quickly I might add (30% YoY), where searches for "health" have decreased -13% YoY.
Also, you can also see in the charts below that geography places a role. "My health" is searched primarily in the global North, and "health" is searched for in the developing, global south. Sure, there are crossovers, but the core of these searches are geographically opposed.
Total volume of searches for "My Health"
Total volume of searches for "Health"
This analysis is not a scientific study. There are variables that I did not control for such as alternate searches, growing trends and the like. I am trying to make a point that is more broad: Are we caring about our (collective) health in a - well - healthful way?
The multitudes of topics like the quantified self, new diet fads (South Beach, Paleo and cleanses) and workout regimes (crossfit) are all channels through which enterprising companies can sell their you their products, services and pop culture. But, do they work? Are they able to make humanity more healthy, are they dealing with the basic health disparities that exist locally, nationally and globally?
The most critical thinking about our well-being should be that that changes our fundamental relationship with it: a selfish health relationship. Meaning that one no longer relies on the screens, apps and gadgets purchased as an alibi for healthy living -- in any other situation that is a lie.
For all the good "selfish" products out there, I submit that there are en equal number of "self-important fetish" products to match. These fetish products don't advance our fundamental thinking of health, or even motivate us to do/be/think in more healthful ways; they exist simply to make money, burn resources and milk our wallets and (to reference the graphics from above) to help us avoid the human condition outside of our own bubble (and THAT is self-importance more so than selfishness).
So what are we to make of this? I don't have an answer; just a question for us:
"How selfish are you?"