**In this 3-part blog series, you will gain insight into different areas of health**
When we think "health," what's the first thing that comes to mind? Looking physically fit? Eating fruits and vegetables? Maintaining a certain body weight?
Society has us fixated on what being healthy means, and often times, this can lead to negative behaviors and health practices. Examples include binge eating, limiting food options, lowering self-esteem and confidence, displaying negative body images, lacking social networks, and so much more.
However, health is so much deeper than our physical looks. Health incorporates a variety of aspects such as our physical, mental, social, emotional, and spiritual well-beings. According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, health can be defined as the condition of being sound in body, mind, or spirit, especially from physical disease or pain. Also, health is a condition in which someone or something is thriving or doing well.
So why is this important? Well, fellow viewer, when we learn and understand health's true meaning, we can make positive and healthier decisions in our life. We can make informed and impactful choices and realize that we have the power to be a healthier.
Areas of Health
As mentioned earlier, there are different areas of health that we can all focus on: Physical, Mental, and Social. Of course, we all want to physically “look” healthy, but sometimes it’s deeper than how we look. Think about physical health for example. Our bodily organ systems are all interconnected - what happens to one system, will affect other organ systems. Even when our bodies are distressed, riled up with emotions and feelings, that has a visceral reaction. We don’t think of it that way, because society implies that being healthy is only external. With a drastic increase for mental health needs, there are “invisible” diseases and issues that society cannot see. This leaves many individuals fighting their inner demons silently, which can play a role in their quality of life. Additionally, this affects how we approach different situations and how we handle different relationships. Even friendships, relationships, and social networks affect how we interact with the world. This should not stop us from befriending others, but encourage us to find common interests with people around us.
When we radiate confidence, good energy, and happiness, it shows. This also attracts the right people who will support you during harsh times
**I am not a licensed clinician. However, I hope to provide some insight, advice, and words of encouragement that worked for me and inspire you to view health as a positive thing.**
1. Physical Health
It’s blatantly obvious that this involves our bodies - inside and out. However, let’s view physical health as something positive!
Many of us create goals to hit the gym, eat better, and look good. As great as this sounds, only a small percentage actually achieve this goal. Other individuals will fall off and start their old habits again. Why is that? Most of this has to do with quick fix diets, cutting cold turkey, false information, and inconsistency. So how can we combat this issue?
Have to or Get to?
Majority of the battle is more mental than it is physical. The moment you say you HAVE to go to the gym, you HAVE to cut out bad foods, you HAVE to eat fruits and vegetables, or you HAVE to do anything - you’ve already lost part of the battle in being healthy. When you “have” to do something, you think of these tasks as a chore, and we all know we hate chores. So when I mention that the battle is more mental than physical, our minds are more powerful than we think.
If we can reconstruct this into I GET to go to the gym, I GET to nourish my body with delicious food, I GET to be healthy, or I GET to do something I really want to do, it changes how we approach life's challenges. The better we are at controlling our thoughts and overcome these mental blocks, we will find ourselves conquering any obstacle.
Cutting Cold Turkey
Another habit that makes it hard for people to be healthier is cutting food cold turkey. Here’s something that may “shock“ you. Carbs, fats, and protein are OKAY. In fact, they’re basically the macro-building blocks of our bodies. Now, it all depends on the TYPES of carbs, fats, and proteins you’re consuming and how OFTEN you’re eating.
If you’re concerned about the foods you’ve been eating, here are some questions to consider:
>Are you eating processed foods?
>What is the nutritional value in this food you're eating?
>Are you hungry or are you dehydrated?
There will always be an abundant amount of carbs, fats, and proteins in practically everything we eat, but when we begin adding the right foods, we can find ourselves making healthier and conscious decisions.
Instead of thinking “I have to cut xxx food from my diet,” think about what your body lacks.
>Are you adding proper amounts of water, fiber, minerals, and nutrients?
>Are the foods you’re eating processed with loads of preservatives?
>How can I properly balance the foods I consume?
Much like a consumer in our Capitalistic society, be smart about what you’re purchasing and putting in your body, especially if you’re determined to be a healthier and better you. Unfortunately, Nutrition is a very heavy topic and it involves a multitude of information. We cannot cover everything here, but remember how important it is to add more nutritious foods in your body, while reducing how often you’re eating “unhealthier” foods.
How to Make or Break a Habit
It takes approximately 90 days to make or break a habit. That’s why when new gym-goers and health enthusiasts fall off after a month or two of trying, they have not fully developed this new choice as a habit. So remember that you will not see results right away. It requires a certain level of consistency, discipline, and determination to make healthier choices. Remember, the battle is more mental than it is physical!
Thank you for taking the time to read Part 1 of 3 on how to be healthier. These are all of my personal life inspirations and changes, many of which come from my experience in work, school, and life. I hope you found something positive and I hope you find ways to make 'healthier' decisions.
If you have any comments, questions, and/or concerns, please feel free to contact me.
Stay tuned fellow viewer!
March 20, 2020