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How Your Mental Health Affects Your Physical Health

Intuitively, doctors have known for years that patients with a healthy, positive mental outlook often achieve better health outcomes than more negative patients. Until recently, they didn’t have much proof to support their observations.

The Link Between Mental and Physical Health

Recent studies have identified multiple specific ways that mental health affects physical health:

Practical Ways to Improve Your Mental and Physical Wellness

The good news? These findings suggest that activities that are good for our mental health are also good for our physical health and vice versa. Try one of these tips:

  • Pick up some weights – Strength training has multiple physical benefits along with the advantage of improving confidence while fighting off depression and anxiety
  • Practice yoga – Regular yoga for as little as 15 minutes a day has been linked to improvements in mental conditions , including depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and PTSD
  • Plan ahead – Taking time for self-care is tough, especially when life is crazy . Plan ahead to make sure you have the time you need to sleep, exercise, or catch up with friends to nurture your mental health
  • Eat mindfully Thinking about what you eat not only helps you to eat more healthfully, it also helps you to enjoy your food. Win, win! Research has shown that mindful eating habits can be an effective tool in treating eating disorders and improving emotional eating habits
  • Spend time outdoors – Studies have shown that spending time out in nature does the body good in multiple ways, from improving depression symptoms to lowering blood pressure

It can be difficult to feel mentally well when we have a physical issue, just as mental conditions often come with physical side effects. May is Mental Health Awareness Month – a great reminder to take time each day to nurture all aspects of your health to enjoy total wellness.


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