The World Health Organization (WHO) defines health as a "state of complete physical, mental and social well-being." By this definition, there exists a difference between being "not ill" and being healthy. Being "not ill" does not automatically translate to being in peak condition.

Maintaining health into old age is a major challenge of our time. The task cannot be accomplished with medication, but rather through a conscious lifestyle: This gives us the best health care and simultaneously the key to a long and healthy life. We must learn to take the initiative again and take responsibility for our bodies, rather than leaving it up to the doctor and our health insurance card. Preventive health care is fun, especially when it noticeably improves our well-being, fitness and overall glow while at the same time getting rid of little health problems.

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure: What has long been a folk saying has increasingly become a hot topic in health and social policy circles. Now we talk about health insurance with bonuses for prevention, additional training for physicians, preventive treatments as requirements. Life expectancy is steadily rising, especially in industrialized countries, but we really only benefit if our quality of life does not decline. The older people get, the more likely they are to suffer from chronic illnesses. In addition, our lifestyle has changed considerably in recent decades: Poor nutrition, too little exercise, too much smoking and alcohol, and stress at work and in everyday life have become our unhealthy companions. People become older and older, but unfortunately also more chronically ill. This is a development that also has great political and economic implications.