6 Celebs Who Shaped the Way We Think of Health

6 Celebs Who Shaped the Way We Think of Health
Editor's Note: This article has been recently updated with latest information and research studies.
 

You may love or hate celebrities, but it is impossible to deny the fact they have a major impact on trends in different aspects of our life. They influence fashion, makeup, lifestyle, and even the way we understand our health.

Celebrities have millions of fans around the globe and their platform allows them to raise awareness of certain health issues or to motivate others to start making healthier habits and decrease* the risk of diseases and illnesses.

These are the times when people from all walks of life are joining the revolutionary movements to bring more freedom and better healthcare to all. Some celebrities made a huge impact on the way we perceive health, here are some of them.

1. Jimmy Kimmel, The Healthcare Advocate

Jimmy Kimmel, the host of a light-night show Jimmy Kimmel Live, became a proper healthcare advocate without even realizing it. Earlier this year, in May, Kimmel shocked everyone when he started his show with a confession about hearing the news that no parent wants to receive from a healthcare provider.

The host and his wife Molly, welcomed their second child, a son but were also told he has a heart condition which required an open heart surgery. Now, Kimmel’s son is okay but his struggle helped him realize the true importance of proper healthcare for all.

He gives updates about his son regularly and explains to his audience everything that current or potential new healthcare plans mean to them.

2. Lady Gaga, Fibromyalgia Awareness

Lady Gaga’s documentary puts fibromyalgia in the spotlight and perfectly showcases the common struggles that patients who have this condition face daily. Gaga was forced to cancel her appearance in Rio de Janeiro and to postpone the European leg of her tour due to chronic pain associated with fibromyalgia.

Reports about her pain and documentary that documents how it’s like to suffer from incredible pain while having many things to do isn’t just about Gaga, but every person who suffers from the same condition as she does. This is particularly important because fibromyalgia is largely misunderstood.

3. Selena Gomez, Lupus Awareness And Kidney Failure

Popular singer and actress or the queen of Instagram, Selena Gomez has always been vocal about her struggle with lupus, an autoimmune condition. Earlier this month, Gomez published a post on Instagram where she detailed her kidney transplant.

The transplant that occurred this summer, shocked her fans and entire public but it also raised an awareness of kidney failure and infections associated with lupus. The superstar was on a donor list for quite some time until her best friend decided to donate the much-needed organ.

Selena Gomez’s story shows there are many people who are still waiting for a kidney that would help them feel better and manage their condition more easily.

4. Charlie Sheen, Rise In HIV Testing

Charlie Sheen Rise In HIV Testing

Charlie Sheen is considered as a bad influence on just about anyone, but that’s not entirely true. The popular actor confessed he is HIV positive, which inspired others to test and see whether they might be HIV positive as well.

In fact, a study whose findings were published in the Prevention Science[1] confirmed the Charlie Sheen Effect. Not only did his revelation lead people to seek information about prevention of HIV, it also increased sales of HIV at-home tests rapidly.

5. Angelina Jolie, Breast And Ovarian Cancer Screening

Angelina Jolie is one of the greatest celebrities of all times, everything she does becomes an instant trend. The notoriously private actress was open about her health and decisions she made to prevent the severe diseases such as breast and ovarian cancers.

Jolie carried she carried BRCA 1 gene mutation which increased her breast cancer risk by 87% and 50% for ovarian cancer. She opted for surgical procedures to remove* her breasts (double mastectomy), ovaries, and fallopian tubes.

Some might describe her decision as edgy or outrageous while others admire her bravery. Regardless of your opinion about her procedures, there has been a dramatic rise in screenings for high-risk population after Angelina released a statement about her decision.

6. Prince Harry, Mental Health Awareness

When you’re a Prince of the United Kingdom, you don’t have the luxury of a private life. Prince Harry lost his mother at such a young age and being in public eye during all this time negatively affected his mental health [2].

His decision to seek professional help saved him and now he encourages others to do the same. Prince Harry was raised in an environment where talking about mental health issues is frowned upon, but now he is an advocate for the freedom to talk about this problem. After his candid interview about mental health struggles, Britain’s leading mental health organization recorded 38% increase* in calls.

Conclusion

Celebrities are granted with the unique opportunity to use their voice to bring awareness to some health concerns. And some of them do it perfectly. Likes of Lady Gaga and Selena Gomez use their own health problems to depict how it’s like to all patients who are diagnosed with poorly understood diseases.

Others, like Charlie Sheen and Jimmy Kimmel, put some health concerns in the spotlight without even realizing it at first. Regardless of nature and manner these persons highlight health issues, what matters is that millions of followers can learn, relate, and be proactive about their health.

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Author

Expert Author : Dr. Ahmed Zayed (Consumer Health Digest)

Dr. Ahmed Zayed Helmy holds a baccalaureate of Medicine and Surgery. He has completed his degree in 2011 at the University of Alexandria, Egypt. Dr. Ahmed believes in providing knowledgeable information to readers. Other than his passion for writing, currently he is working as a Plastic surgeon and is doing his masters at Ain shams University.