Health and wellness are important topics that are thankfully becoming of greater concern for many people. With all of the health information out there, however, it can tend to get confusing for some. In this article, we’re going to go back to the basics so we can get clear on what health and wellness really are.
What Is Health?
The common definition for health is: “the state of being free from illness or injury.” According to this definition, if you are free of illness or injury, you are healthy. But something feels like it is missing from this definition, doesn’t it? Health is surely more than just being free of sickness.
Health has a vital quality to it. When we are healthy, we are thriving, not just surviving. But how do we reach this state of vital well-being?
What Is Wellness?
Wellness is a word with several definitions and interpretations. Wellness can refer to a feeling of being well, so that more than just being in a state of good physical health, we have sound mental and emotional health as well.
Wellness can also refer to the act of practicing healthy habits on a daily basis to attain these better physical and mental health outcomes.
Either way, the word wellness carries a more holistic quality to it. Whereas health may refer to just physical health, wellness focuses on the health of our whole being—body, mind and spirit. When these different aspects of ourselves are in balance, and are each thriving cohesively, then we are in a state of real health and wellness.
How Do We Improve Our Health & Wellness?
To improve your health and wellness, there are few basics to consider.
Health is Individual
Understand that health is unique to each individual. What is healing to one person may be harmful to another. We all have different bodies, body types, genetic and cultural backgrounds, lifestyles, environments, food allergies or sensitivities, and so many other factors that make us unique. Find out more about yourself as an individual and learn what works for your body and mind. This can be done with expert guidance, of course, but this approach will help you learn what works for you and what doesn’t.
Cut Out Junk
If you want to be healthy, cut out junk from your life. Get rid of junk foods, in all their forms, and make an effort to stop consuming toxins. Educate yourself on common sources of toxins and find healthy alternatives to modern products. Get rid of junk media too—movies, music, shows, social media pages, or any form of media that fills your mind with fear, violence, negativity or anything else that taxes your mental health.
Your body and mind are always seeking to maintain balance and restore optimal health. We often tend to get in the way of this natural healing force by consuming toxins and other substances that distract our immune systems. Once you get rid of these distractions, your body and mind can heal themselves—with the support of some good nutrition and lifestyle practices of course.
Keep It Natural
Nature knows best. When it comes to diet and lifestyle, try to keep things as natural as possible. Rather than eating packaged or processed foods, try to add more fresh produce and whole grains in your diet. Focus on your major nutrient groups and be sure to eat your fruits and vegetables.
Also, always aim to buy organic over conventional. Conventional pesticides used in food can be a major source of toxins.
Do your best to use natural products as well. Many toxins can come from unexpected sources like our shampoo, laundry detergent, cooking oil, pots and pans, make up, and many others.
This is why “the more natural, the better” is a great principle to follow for health. Make sure you educate yourself on what is really natural, as some companies take advantage of the word and use it for marketing, even when their products are from natural.
Keep It Simple
Simplifying things can help us stay on top of our health and not get lost in complex information or trends. Some simple health principles to consider are:
- Pay attention to what you put in your body
- Eat whole foods
- Eat moderate amounts of food (don’t overeat)
- Drink plenty of water
- Exercise often
- Go outside and get fresh air each day
- Practice good hygiene
- Get plenty of sleep
- Find ways to relax and manage stress
- Have fun and do things you enjoy
You can make up your own principles that help you do what keeps you healthy and happy without overthinking it or making things too complicated.
Focus on Mind & Body Wellness
Health is a state of balance between mind and body. To achieve real health and wellness we have to consider more than just our physical health. Rather than focusing just on the absence of symptoms, find the things that help you thrive on all levels—physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.
If you approach your health and wellness from a holistic perspective, keep it natural, and keep it simple, health can become something obvious and easy, and not something complicated and confusing as it has become for so many. Of course, we can always learn more information and details, but having a sound foundation for what health is can help you to not get lost or overwhelmed with all of the health info that exists nowadays.