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CHAPTER 3: What is Health?



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Humans have been concerned with health and disease probably since time began but the use of the word health to describe well-being is a more recent event. The word health is derived from the old English word hoelth which meant a state of being sound. Prior to Hippocrates and even continuing to this day, in some circles, health was considered a divine gift.

In 1948 the World Health Organization (WHO) defined health as:  “a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”. This definition has become a standard part of many, if not most, chiropractors’ report of findings and lay lectures despite criticism of the definition itself. 

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