How do consumer choices affect my health?
As a consumer, many of the choices you make on a daily basis have the potential to impact your health: what food you buy, where you shop, even what materials are used in packaging, construction, and the products you use on a daily basis. Understanding how companies approach health concerns – and how sometimes they ignore health concerns – is important for keeping you and your family healthy in your day-to-day lives.
Our topical health guides focus on what you can do as a consumer to avoid potential health risks. This includes highlighting certain drugs, medical devices, and products that have been shown to be unsafe or which may put people at a high risk of health problems. We also provide information about major health issues and what things people can do as consumers to reduce their risk of suffering and dying from conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, or stroke.
What are the most common consumer-related health problems?
Physical Activity: Comfort is the goal of many modern products, and as a result many people today lead sedentary and inactive lifestyles. Staying active can improve your health significantly – as little as 20 minutes of heart-pumping movement can help reduce the risk of a wide variety of disease and health conditions.
Lack of Sleep: Smartphones, tablets, televisions in the bedroom – a lot of the technology today is designed to attract and keep our attention. Add to that caffeinated drinks and the 24/7 lure of social media, and many people are liable to becoming overstimulated and under-rested. Getting a good night’s sleep is important to maintaining your health, with studies showing that the risk of certain cancers and other health problems goes way down when you get the right amount of rest.
Obesity: While physical activity can help prevent or manage obesity (see above), a lot of people are not aware that the foods they are eating can be putting them at risk. Even many diets are little more than marketing ploys which don’t really help you, and dietary supplements make a lot of health claims with little actual results. Losing weight by making good nutritional choices and getting regular exercise will help you avoid a large number of health issues.
What if my health problems are caused by a product/service I purchased?
As a consumer, you have the legal right to purchase products that are generally considered safe and effective. If a product you purchased causes health problems or injuries, you may be able to seek compensation to pay for medical treatments, replacement costs, lost income, and other expenses related to the health issues caused by the product.
This is also true of services you purchase, including medical services, home repair or construction, and other services you may pay for. For example, a doctor who does not properly recommend screening for certain types of cancer based on the recommendations commonly accepted by the medical community could be held liable for negligence if you are later diagnosed with that cancer.
If you believe your own or your loved one’s health problems are caused by a product or service you purchased, you should get in touch with a lawyer to review your case for free. Visit the Legal section of our website to learn more about the most common consumer law complaints.