When you have a healthy body and healthy mind, your life is immeasurably better. Many don’t realize how easy it can be to look after your own well-being. That’s why we’re sharing these 3 simple tips that are the foundation of a healthy lifestyle to support your mind and brain health at any age.
CONTENTS – In this article, you will discover three simple tips to look after your mind and body, including:
- Understand the Importance of Looking After Your Mind
- Tips for a Healthy Body, Healthy Mind
- Why You Should Eat Healthy
- How Working Out Regularly Helps Your Mind (and Body)
- Mental Benefits of Mastering the Art of Meditation
- Final Thoughts on a Healthy Body and Healthy Mind
The Importance of Looking After Your Mind (and Body)
A healthy body and a healthy mind are almost inseparable: when you work on one, the other follows. While many people focus on taking care of their body, it’s absolutely vital that you take the time to look after both your body and your mind together.
Maintaining good mental health doesn’t have to be as difficult as you might expect. There are simple steps you can follow to transform your habits and how you feel. That way, you’ll have a healthy body and healthy mind in almost no time at all.
So, how do you keep a healthy mind and healthy body? Keep reading to find out!
Tips for A Healthy Body, Healthy Mind
Here are three simple tips for a healthy body and a healthy mind that you can start right away.
1. Choose to Eat Healthy Foods
Most people know that they “should” eat a healthy diet. Proper nutrition is important for your body to grow, and also to support regenerative processes as you age. Your hair, teeth, skin, and tissues all draw benefits from eating healthy foods.
But did you know that making the effort to eat a healthy diet is one of the best things that you can do to promote great mental health?
While you might think what you eat has anything to do with your mind, it plays a major role. The way you eat can have an enormous impact on your mind and emotions.
Let’s take for example chowing down on unhealthy junk food that’s packed with E numbers (additives), sugar, and artificial ingredients. While you might get immediate gratification and enjoy the experience, it can trigger extreme mood swings.
When you make the decision to eat healthy foods, you’re encouraging a better mental state for yourself. To boost your mental health, focus on eating these brain foods.
Best Foods for Brain Health
- Lots of fruits and vegetables
- Foods high in Omega-3 fatty acids (salmon, sardines, oysters, other oily fish)
- Dark green leafy vegetables, like arugula, kale, spinach, swiss chard,
- Nuts, seeds, and legumes including walnuts, flaxseed, beans, lentils
If you want to foster a more stable existence, you’re more likely going to get the vitamins, minerals, and micro-nutrients that your body and brain need by eating this way (vs. junk food or the drive-through).
You may also want to limit or eliminate alcohol and other similarly harmful substances from your diet for optimum mental health. Heavy drinking interferes with the chemicals you need for good mental health, can lead to anxiety and depression, and limit your coping skills. It can also lead to chronic disease and relationship troubles.
So, if you need help, don’t be afraid to get in touch with a support service like Sunshine Behavioral Health.
2. Work Out Regularly
In addition to improving your muscle strength and endurance, committing to regular workouts can work wonders on your body and your mental health. There are several reasons for this.
For starters, when you don’t exercise your body or work out as often as you can, you might experience:
- Low energy levels
- Weight gain
- Subsequently, low self-esteem
But when you work out regularly, your whole system works better – including your brain and mind. That’s because working out gets oxygen and nutrients out to your tissues, and helps your cardiovascular system, like your heart and lungs, work better.
When everything is working optimally, you feel better, which can boost your outlook.
There’s also a chemical component to it. You’ll produce fewer stress hormones, like cortisol and adrenaline, and release more endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine – all of which make you feel good.
Some studies show that aerobic exercise can help keep your mind ‘sharp.’ [Neurology, 2019].
Others indicate that working out can be helpful to those suffering from anxiety and depression. [National Institute of Mental Health]
According to the U.S. Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, you want to get a good workout 3-5 days a week that includes 30-60 minutes of cardio and strength training in each session.
If that sounds ambitious because you’ve been living a sedentary lifestyle (especially during the pandemic), you can start slow and work your way into it.
Not only will your body benefit, but so will your mind.
Related Article: Active living tips for seniors
3. Master The Art Of Meditation
Another excellent step that you can follow to improve your mental health is to master the art of meditation.
Meditation is a practice that has been popular in many cultures for thousands of years. It aims to help participants get better connected with themselves, their surroundings and the reality of life.
Far too many people get caught up in life’s many distractions that can keep you overwhelmed and disconnected. You might spend your free time mindlessly scrolling social media or melting into the sofa, watching a movie or binge-watching a TV series.
Rest assured, you are not alone!
But try this: Instead of letting your mind get lost in something mindless, try getting more mindful with a meditation session. It’s far better for your mental health.
You don’t need any special equipment or skills to meditate, just somewhere comfortable and quiet.
When you’re ready, here’s any easy way to meditate:
- Sit or lie down in a comfortable position, allowing your limbs to relax
- Tighten then release your muscles one by one from head to toe
- Unclench your jaw to release all the tension and stress you’re holding onto
- Focus on your breathing or chant a mantra/affirmation. This will help clear your mind of passing thoughts, and allow you to focus on the here and now, not the past or present.
Clearing your mind can be extremely difficult at first, but once you practice, you’ll find it’s a good way to become more balanced and less stressed.
You can also use an app like Insight Timer for free, short guided meditations.
You’ll want to set aside a certain amount of time, say at least 10 minutes each day to mentally rejuvenate yourself by meditating.
Related Article: Finding more mindfulness in daily life.
Final Thoughts on Tips for A Healthy Body and Healthy Mind
While these three steps may seem fairly basic, they are fundamental to promoting a healthy body and healthy mind. Now that you know how easy it can be, incorporate these steps into your daily practices and you’ll be feeling great in no time.
Photo credit: Feature – Valeria Ushakova (Pexels); all others courtesy of Canva Pro.
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