Do you have that friend who seemingly has it all: a brilliant career, a wonderful family and a fit body? What most people don’t realize is, she too struggles with her own demons.
As much as we’d all love for a healthy life to be a sum of healthy habits, such as eating well, exercising, and sleeping, we are much more complex beings than that. We are a sum of our thoughts, perceptions, and feelings, just as much as our daily choices and actions.
So, it’s no wonder that low self-esteem has the power to affect your immune system, as research has shown that for example people who struggle with self-blame at work experience drops in their immunity more frequently than those who are confident. This is merely one part of an intricate equation of life, and we are only scratching the surface of how our emotional wellbeing affects our mind, as well as how our physical vitality impacts our mental state.
Be happy to live longer
Let’s consider this “chicken or the egg” conundrum: do you believe that you need to be healthy in order to be happy, or the other way around? Apparently, thinking positive thoughts has been linked to increased life longevity, even for patients with heart disease.
However, if you need to start somewhere, start with the things you can control with ease. Think about what makes you happy and do it more often! It can be exercise, which is known to boost your happy hormones, but it can also be something like enjoying a funny book. Just stick to what makes you smile, laugh out loud, and detox from daily stress!
Balanced nutrition for all-around resilience
We’re often told that the quality of our meals shapes our physical resilience, but what about our mental fortitude? This is where the famous expression “trusting your gut feeling” gains a whole new level of meaning, because studies have shown that a healthy gut flora is a key ingredient in our emotional stability and mental health.
The right foods give us the right amount of energy, they balance our hormones, and protect our bodies from harmful microbes. Sources of essential macro and micronutrients are crucial for gut balance, so ingredients such as anti-inflammatory Manuka Oil, antioxidant-packed Matcha tea, and the protein-rich Spirulina should reign supreme on your menu.
It takes time to master the art of listening to our body and recognizing our needs.
Mindfulness for prevention
More people join the mindfulness movement every day, and due to this simple practice’s incredible potential to soothe the mind and heal the body, it has become one of the pillars of health. It may start as a meditation practice and breathing exercises, but mindfulness reflects a permanent mindset anchored in the present moment, embracing its beauty, and letting go of all the things we cannot change.
When you incorporate mindful meditation into your life, science has shown that it helps alleviate the impact of stress by controlling our inflammatory responses. There are even studies that aim to explore how mindfulness can help us regulate our emotional responses and how this may help reduce the risk of brain degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s or help those who already suffer from it.
The art of listening
The entire story of how our physical, cognitive, and emotional behaviour is intertwined is based upon the premise that we have the ability to recognize our own needs. However, our internal signals often get crossed, so what sounds to us like hunger may in fact be boredom, so we end up stress-eating.
It takes time to master the art of listening to our body and recognizing our needs. Some of the best actions in life may not feel as pleasant from the get-go, such as starting an exercise regime, or a challenging job, but it is precisely these choices that will end up shaping our existence both inside and out. The beauty of it all? Most of what happens in your body and your mind is in your hands. Perhaps it’s time to embrace the responsibility and start listening to our internal voice!
By: Sophia Smith. Sophia is beauty and style blogger, an eco-lifestyle lover and a food enthusiast. She is very passionate about natural skincare, minimalist wardrobe, yoga and mindful living. You can find out more about her writing by following her on: Facebook Twitter Google +