If you’re just working on your fitness regimen and not practicing healthy mental hygiene, you won’t get the results you hoped to achieve. It’s important to balance mental and physical health because there’s a link between the two. One affects the other dramatically. If you’re under stress, sleepless and filled with anxiety, you often see the scales go up, while your energy level drops. On the other hand, if you’re ill or even just out of shape, you may find your mood dropping and ability to focus impaired.
Relaxation techniques not only restore your mental peace, they affect your body.
Meditation doesn’t just relax you, it actually changes the brain in areas that help you think clearer, have deeper concentration and remember more. It also has a huge affect on the body, lowering blood pressure, improving heart rate, improves breathing rate and of course, brain waves. Stress plays a role in our health and meditation can help reduce daily stressors. It helps the muscles to relax and the tension to dissipate.
Exercise helps burn off the hormones of stress.
When you workout, you’re doing as much for your mind as you are for your body. You’re sending oxygen and nutrient rich blood to all parts of the body, including the brain via the increased circulation. You’re also burning off the hormones of stress that can not only harm your body, but leave you mentally wiped out and anxious or depressed. A hard workout induces the brain to release endorphins and other hormones that lift your spirits and give you a sense of well being.
Taking care of both your mental and physical needs with nutrition is important.
Most people are abundantly aware of sugar highs and lows, just one example of how eating healthy takes care of both your mind and body. You may already know how eating healthy plays a huge role in your overall fitness and health, such as reducing the risk of heart disease, providing antioxidants that protect both the brain and the body and helping you to shed pounds while providing adequate nutrition to maintain cell functioning and other physical and mental requirements. There’s a connection between the foods you eat and your mood. Nutrients, such as omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D, magnesium, folic acid, B vitamins, and tryptophan all play a role in your mood. One study showed that an imbalance of Omega-3 fatty acids to Omega-6 actually led to anger and violence.
- You need to take time for yourself mentally, as much as you need to make room in your schedule for healthy activity. Both are important.
- Dehydration and lack of adequate intake of water has effects on both the body and mind. One study shows that many seniors who were originally diagnosed with dementia actually were dehydrated.
- A positive self image can boost your efforts to shed pounds and get fitter. By the same token, constantly berating yourself is counterproductive to losing weight.
- Make sure you get adequate sleep at night in a dark room. It’s good for both the body and mind.