Health education is defined as the principle by which individuals and groups of people learn to behave in a manner conducive to the promotion, maintenance, or restoration of health. The ultimate aim of Health Education is Positive Behavioural Modification.

Education for health begins with people. It hopes to motivate them with whatever interests they may have in improving their living conditions. Its aim is to develop in them a sense of responsibility for health conditions for themselves as individuals, as members of families, and as communities. In communicable disease control, health education commonly includes an appraisal of what is known by a population about a disease, an assessment of habits and attitudes of the people as they relate to spread and frequency of the disease, and the presentation of specific means to remedy observed deficiencies. (Washington State Department of Health)

Health education is included in the curriculum of most schools. In the United States some forty states require the teaching of health education. A comprehensive health education curriculum consists of planned learning experiences which will help students achieve desirable attitudes and practices related to critical health issues. Some of these are: emotional health and a positive self image; appreciation, respect for, and care of the human body and its vital organs; physical fitness; health issues of alcohol, tobacco and drug use and abuse; health misconceptions and quackery; effects of exercise on the body systems and on general well being; nutrition and weight control; sexual relationships, the scientific, social and economic aspects of community and ecological health; communicable and degenerative diseases including sexually transmitted diseases; disaster preparedness; safety and driver education; choosing professional medical and health services; and choices of health careers.

The term Health Education can also refer to the process of educating health professionals, including post-secondary education culminating in supervised experience.

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Author's Bio: 

This definition is part of a series that covers the topic of Health Education. The Official Guide to Health Eduction is Curt Graham.

The author, Curt Graham, is a medical doctor (OBG) who has spent 40 years in the medical care environment in active medical practice, teaching medical students, writing medical information handouts for his patients, writing articles for local publication in the media, and author of a book on infertility. 

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