After we discussed yesterday how food and sleep affect our health it is time to see how physical activity and the mind influence our well being.
3. Physical activity– doing regular physical activity has a lot of benefits not only for your overall look but for your health as a whole. It is proven that physical activity reduces the risk of developing heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, some cancers, type 2 diabetes and osteoporosis. Regular physical activity also helps to control weight, and may help to ease stress, anxiety, and depression.
You should aim at doing lots of non exercise physical activity, which means having more active lifestyle– so after you read the article 😉 get off the PC, leave the chips in the pantry and go for a walk! Besides that it is good if you include some intensive workouts at least three times a week. And by intensive I don’t mean prolonged running, I mean short and effective workouts that include some strength training and sprints. I already discussed here how strength training could prevent osteoporosis.
4. Mind– here we come to the powers of the mind. Your body responds to the way you feel, think and act. When you feel stressed, sad, anxious- your body is actually sending you a signal that something is wrong. There is a lot of books and researches on the correlation between your emotions and your physical health. Poor emotional health can weaken your body’s immune system, making you more likely to get colds and other infections during emotionally difficult times. Candace Pert says that the chemicals which run in our body and brain are the same that run in our emotions, thus we should pay more attention to emotions in respect with health.
The mind/ body connection is a really complicated thing. As I said earlier everything comes up to chemical reactions, which when disrupted lead to “chronic stress syndrome”. The mixture of hormones released as a response suppresses the immune system. This is again due to the way our ancestors adapted dealing with occasional threats during hunting and living. But in todays life this adaptive process is hurting us more than it is helping us. We have really stressful life, and thus we keep the releasing of this hormones constant.This stress response that is continually “on” leads to declining our resistance to disease. Emotions likes grief, feelings of failure, and suppression of anger, produce over-secretion of these same hormones, which suppress the immune system.
Even if we look simpler at things, and take a look at our daily life- we will find out how when we feel emotionally down, it seems like our strength is drained. Everything becomes harder, we feel tired and weak and most likely loose desire to deal with our life. All of this is a consequence of our not so healthy mind. Good news is that as everything else mind health could be improved if we try harder. In future articles I will give some advices how you could cope better with stress, anxiety and the pressure as a whole!
Now after you are aware how each of the four components influence our overall health, probably you share my opinion and I hope that you will take action to improve all four of them!