Taking care of your mental and social health is just as important as your physical health. Physical and mental health are correlated. Your mental and social health constitutes the outlook of your life. Unchecked mental health conditions can have an immediate impact on your physique. Furthermore, it puts your social health at risk.
Meaningful social relationships are a defining factor of your overall health wellness. Consequently, socializing and outgoing people tend to live happier lives. And we don’t need to tell you that happiness is the key to the overall well-being of body and mind.
There are plenty of ways to take control of your physical and mental health wellness. Read along to learn the six easy to follow strategies for improving your physical, psychological and social health.
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Difference Between Physical And Mental Health
There are no distinctions between physical and mental health. Both physical and mental health are closely interconnected to one another. Just like physical health, mental health can have an impact on our motivation and energy level.
Mental health is critical to physical health and happiness. So much of what we do physically has an effect on our mental well-being. Hence, it’s important to pay attention to both physical and mental health to maintain overall wellness.
In addition, a balanced lifestyle can help avoid the onset or worsening of mental health disorders. Such as depression and anxiety. It may also aid in the recovery of people suffering from these ailments. Thus, taking care of the body is an essential aspect of mental health strategy.
How Does Mental & Emotional Health Affect Physical Health
The mind and body are often thought to be separate. Mental and physical health are inextricably linked. So, how does your mental health affect your physical health? Your physical well-being can be influenced by your mental health. In contrast, poor mental health may have a negative impact on your physical well-being.
Your mental well-being has a major impact on your overall well-being. Being mentally stable will help you stay healthy and avoid serious health problems. Positive psychological well-being was found to lower the risk of heart attacks and strokes in a study. Poor mental health, on the other hand, may lead to poor physical health or unhealthy habits.
Bad effects of mental health on physique can be seen in the following aspects:
Many chronic diseases have been related to depression. Diabetes, asthma, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and arthritis are among these diseases.
Schizophrenia has also been attributed to an increased risk of cardiovascular and respiratory illnesses. Dealing with a chronic physical ailment can be made more complicated by mental health issues. People with depression or other mental health issues have a higher death rate from cancer and heart disease.
Having Difficulty Sleeping
Sleep problems such as insomnia and sleep apnoea are more common in people with mental health issues. Insomnia makes it difficult to fall asleep. Breathing problems caused by sleep apnea can cause you to wake up frequently. Sleep disorders may be caused by conditions such as depression, anxiety, or bipolar disorder. Furthermore, insomnia issues can exacerbate pre-existing mental health issues.
Sleep disorder can have a damaging effect on our physical health. Long term lack of sleep can increase your risk of heart disease and diabetes.
People under tremendous mental pressure are most likely to take up smoking. By now, we are all familiar with what smoking does to our bodies. People with mental health conditions experience a low level of dopamine. The chemicals in the cigarette trigger the production of dopamine for a short while. Hence, you might be prone to smoking to relieve stress.
However, the nicotine present in a cigarette can get you addicted to it. Long term nicotine abuse will lead to lung cancer, heart disease and other medical conditions.
Poor Mental Health Shortens Lifespan
According to Oxford University researchers, having a severe mental disorder will decrease your life expectancy by up to 20 years. Depression can shorten your life by seven to ten years on its own. Learning to control your thought process could help you keep calm. You can manage your emotions to outside stress triggers. Stress can shorten your telomeres of DNA. It is responsible for forecasting longevity.
How To Improve Physical And Mental Health
The key to improving your physical and mental health is to look after your mind and body simultaneously. A healthy body can lead to a healthier mind. On the other hand, poor physical health can increase the risk of mental illness. Similarly, poor mental well-being may have a detrimental impact on physical health. It increases the risk of developing multiple medical conditions.
So, how to improve physical and mental health? Taking care of your well-being can entail finding clinical assistance and treatment. Furthermore, it can entail taking a number of measures to enhance your overall well-being. Your positive social habits can help build a support system for physical and mental wellness.
6 Strategies To Improve Physical, Mental and Social Health
Wellness is the constant process of living a healthy and fulfilling life. A mere absence of disease doesn’t make one healthy. WHO defines health as the state of complete physical, mental and social well-being.
Follow these six strategies for the overall wellness of your health and bring balance into your life.
1. Get Enough Sleep
How well you sleep has a huge impact on your physical and mental health. A good night’s sleep is important for a healthy mind and body. Having enough sleep can make a significant difference in your overall health. It affects our moods, ability to learn and remember things. Other bodily functions such as appetite, metabolism, and hormone release are also affected by your sleep cycle.
Getting 8 hours of sleep can be literally the cure to all of your life problems. Sleep boost immunity and mental well-being. It can ward off medical conditions like heart disease, diabetes, depression and schizophrenia. Furthermore, studies have found that getting enough sleep aids in weight loss. It is because maintaining a good sleep cycle increases the production of the hormone leptin. Leptin is known to make you feel less hungry and prevent.
In addition, getting enough sleep increases fertility in women by producing a higher amount of reproductive hormones. For adults, a decent night’s sleep is between seven and nine hours. You can also feel more alert by taking a 30-minute nap during the day.
Getting enough sleep is a necessity, not a luxury.
Skipping even a few hours of sleep can hamper mental sharpness and the ability to manage stress. So, go to bed with enough time in hand. Avoid having caffeine and take a break from screen time at least 2 hours before going to bed.
2. Practice Yoga
Research suggests that practising yoga can boost the well-being of physical and mental health. Yoga composes of a wide variety of muscle stretching positions. It’s an excellent way to relieve chronic pain while still increasing flexibility and endurance.
Yoga also helps to relax the mind since it is normally done in a relaxing atmosphere. The aim of yoga is the maintenance of physical and mental balance.
Commit to incorporating meditation into your daily routine as a stress-relieving method. Both morning and night are excellent periods for meditation. If you aren’t ready to do it every day, start with short practices two or three days a week. Sessions should be 5-10 minutes long in the beginning.
3. Build Healthy Relationships
Humans are a social group by nature. It should come as no surprise, then, that good, supportive relationships can have a huge impact on our physical and mental health. People who have good, supportive relationships are more likely to:
- Have an enhanced immune system
- Have an overall improved endocrine system
However, those who are lonely or alone will suffer health consequences. Isolation has also been shown in studies to have the same negative health effects as smoking or obesity. Hence, make sure to cultivate a few solid relationships with people you can trust. It may be a member of your family or a personal friend. Good relationships build a sense of belonging and self-worth.
Consequently, social distancing in the time of pandemic can have an overwhelming effect on physical and mental health. So, to keep in contact with friends and family, take advantage of technology. Apps like Skype and FaceTime are useful for video chatting, particularly if you live far apart. Healthy, thriving relationships can help you feel like a part of the community. It gives your life great meaning. Finally, remember that asking for help and support from friends and family isn’t a sign of weakness. Being surrounded by loved ones when you’re feeling lonely is one of the ways for improving physical, mental and social health.
4. Eat Clean & Healthy
You will not realize how much your food choices impact the way you think and feel until you start eating healthy. Our bodies and brains function better when we eat the right foods. So, choose nutrient-dense, minimally processed foods.
Switching to a well-balanced, low-sugar, high-healthy-fat diet gives you more control over your well-being. It enhances sleep and mood, aids brain growth, and eventually improves your appearance and well-being.
Depending on biology and other health factors, everybody reacts differently to such foods. An experiment about how the food you’ve added or removed affects your mood. Taking out the food with “negative value” is the best way to go. Eat food with good fats to improve brain functions.
In addition, include natural supplements in your diet to boost immunity and aid to general health. The hippocampus is a central brain region. It is involved in learning, memory, and mental well-being. Consequently, good condition of the hippocampus is related to diet. Healthy eaters have a larger hippocampal volume than people who eat unhealthy foods.
The gut-churning sensation is all too real. Your gut is responsive to emotions like rage, anxiety, sadness, and joy. Furthermore, the brain can respond to signals from your stomach—all the more reason to eat a well-balanced, nutritious diet. A healthy diet keeps your physical and mental health in good condition.
5. Keep Time For Exercise In Your Daily Routine
Staying active can help you in a variety of ways. For instance, exercise prevents the worsening of physical and mental health symptoms. Physical exercise should be incorporated into your everyday routine to keep your body and mind safe.
You don’t need a gym membership to incorporate exercise into your daily routine. It’s important to choose physical activities that you enjoy. Physical activities need to be easily integrated into your daily routine.
Being active is great for your physical wellness. Consequently, it improves your mental well-being by raising your self-esteem. It changes your mood in a positive manner by releasing the chemical dopamine in your brain. Exercise improves the cognitive functions of the brain by reducing stress and anxiety. Schizophrenic patients run the risk of obesity. So, they should at least have 30 minutes of walk daily.
Furthermore, you can meet new people through the means of exercise. Start a walking group with friends, family or co-workers. You can even go to the gym together with your co-workers and get over the fear of being all alone in a new place. Effective physical activities can keep you away from falling into the despair of mental illness. Hence, daily exercise is a must for improving physical, mental and social health.
6. Do Something New Every Day
Humans need to be constantly working for self-development and a sense of accomplishment. You might have reached the peak of your career and assume that you have achieved everything. However, there must be a gnawing empty feeling at the back of your mind asking you what’s next. People tend to become bored if their life comes to a halt.
Do not become sluggish. Otherwise, you will not be able to experience the wonderful feeling that comes from setting and achieving a goal. The value of setting goals and having a purpose in life should not be underestimated. Having a purpose play an important role in the happiness and enjoyment of life.
Doing something new every day will stimulate brain activities. Challenge yourself even when you have all the luxuries in life. Because boredom and idleness can beget problems for physical and mental health.
Examine your life and find a place where you can improve. You could take up reading books of the history genre. Do something that you always wanted to do but never got around to it. Learn a new language that fascinates you. Continuous learning throughout one’s life boosts one’s self-esteem. It encourages social engagement as well as a more healthy lifestyle.
Learning is beneficial for our minds. Furthermore, it can improve our overall well-being as we learn new skills. Anecdotal evidence suggests that participating in educational programs might help older people overcome depression.
Write down your goals and set plans to achieve them. The need for accomplishment will give you something new to look forward to every day.
Bonus Tip: Treat Yourself With Love & Respect
More than often, we lose ourselves in the hustle and bustle of daily life. We forget about the importance of self-care for our physical and mental health. Listen to your body and mind to check in on your mental health. If you are stressed or anxious, your body will usually show symptoms accordingly. So, take a pause away from life if you realize something is going wrong. Figure out how to minimize the negativity from your life.
If life becomes too stressful, go on a break to do what you love. Twenty minutes of self-care daily can have an enormous positive impact on your body and soul. You could eat your favourite sundae or go on retail therapy.
The type of self-care you choose should cater to your needs. Do not ever go to extreme lengths for someone who wouldn’t do the same for you. Staying away from toxic people and toxic environment is a must for the well-being of your physical and mental health.
In contrast, learn to recognize and embrace loving relationships. Friends and family who are there for you no matter what, never underappreciate or undermine them! Spend time building nurturing relationships that inspire you to do better.
A healthy lifestyle can prevent the worsening of physical and mental health conditions. Furthermore, managing your stress and anxiety can bring positive changes and improve your overall well-being. The interconnectedness of your mind and body makes it more important to take good care of both simultaneously. Hence, taking care of your gut health won’t do you any good if you don’t get enough sleep or exercise.