Not enough time!

By Dra Maria Alice [email protected]

Dra Maria Alice is a Consultant in General and Family Medicine and Director of the Luzdoc International Medical Service.

Rush, rush, rush – rushing through life is everybody’s problem (well, almost everybody).

Even those who are not working seem to find a way of packing their days with “things to do”, creating their own stress timetable as if they cannot resist being contaminated by the “rush virus”.

It is pretty rare to hear someone say they have time for all they want to do.

Time is money, they say. But is it? Time is an illusion, according to Buddha. Einstein said time is joined with space in a single four-dimensional reality and I read somewhere that time is the tick, tock, tick, tock measure of death’s approaching footsteps. Take your pick.

Whatever time is, we all seem pretty much in agreement that we have less and less of it. Modern life is a constant round of juggling and diarising, of rushing and squeezing and supposedly “managing” time.

The trouble is, we live in a capitalist world that believes time is money. Every moment is an opportunity to make money, but time is also money in the sense that every second that goes by costs us. It costs to have the lights on, to pay the mortgage, to eat. It costs to be alive. Money is meant to support life, not the other way round.

Money is an energy that flows through our lives and time is the dimension it flows in. But while the money supply is, in theory, expandable, time has proved annoyingly limited. When people use all their time to make money, they do not have enough time to enjoy a good quality, healthy life. They miss out on the real thing.

Studies show that increasing wealth in a society results in the so-called “diseases of affluence” such as heart disease, cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes and obesity.

Frequent and regular physical exercise boosts the immune system and helps prevent these diseases but – here comes the factor time – people say that there is not enough time.

According to a new study in The Journal of Physiology, a lack of free time is no longer a viable excuse for avoiding exercise. Researchers have found that it not only takes less time than what is typically recommended, but also the regimen does not have to be overly intense to be effective in helping reduce the risk of such diseases.

Physical fitness comprises of two related concepts: general fitness which is a state of health and wellbeing and specific fitness, a task-orientated definition based on the ability to perform specific aspects of sports or occupations.

Yesterday, I had the pleasure of meeting and having a chat with Sven-Göran Eriksson and Stefan Edberg at the presentation of the Cascade Sports Academies in Lagos.

Luzdoc and the Hospital Particular do Algarve group are involved with the establishing of Cascade Med (the resort’s medical centre) and (being Clinical Director of both) I am having the pleasure of working with Dr. João Bacalhau to turn it into a Medical Wellness Centre for anyone who wishes to assess and improve their health and wellbeing. The close relationship between the Sports Academies and the Cascade Med will certainly be an asset for the success of this project.

I think that people are actually becoming more and more aware of the need to exercise in order to maintain good health, even if we are not all like Sven or Stefan…

My apologies to those who used to enjoy my articles (I heard a few people saying so…) for the long period that I stopped writing the Algarve Resident’s ‘Prescription’ column but, believe me, I did not have enough time!    

As a matter of fact, a couple of weeks ago, I realised that, as time always stays the same, the important thing is to get focused on managing it properly. It works as you can see!

My advice in order to keep healthy: manage your time, start exercising and include routine medical prevention in your habits.

Best health wishes, Maria Alice

To get in contact with Dra Maria Alice, please call Luzdoc at 282 780 700 or email [email protected] Alternatively, visit the LuzDoc website by clicking the link on the right of this page