Leading a healthy life entails many factors: the food we eat, the amount of exercise we get, our personal relationships, our physical well-being, our psychological well-being, how we deal with stress, and more. Besides these aspects, I think staying in balance is a good motto. Below, I will reflect on these parts of a healthy life in detail based on my personal experience.
Being healthy has a lot to do with what we do not have much control over: the economic situation we were born in and our genetics. If we were born and raised in a poor neighborhood, our access to healthy food and medicine is usually much less. Also, if we were handed down bad genes, then we have to accept the fact that we might be unhealthy naturally. I was born in a middle-class family, but I have a line of heart troubles and psychological disorders in my family. So, though I did not encounter the first issue, I got in line for sour genetics.
But, say you were not born into poverty and did not inherit bad genes. What you eat can easily shape your overall health. For instance, as soon as I eat at McDonald’s, or any other fast food restaurant specializing in selling food with tons of preservatives, chemicals, and the like, my stomach and whole body will eventually feel remorse for taking in such drivel. I will have irregular bowel movements, I will have a sugar high accompanied with a low, a headache, a stomach ache, and more within hours of consumption. Our bodies respond to our poor tastes, but we often ignore these signals.
In my experience, I need to exercise every day, at least a little bit. If I skip out on exercising, my knees will hurt from sitting most of the day, I feel more depressed than usual, and my self confidence will be less. It is good to combine aerobic and anaerobic exercises together in one day, though doing just one type of exercise each day is fine. Exercise seems to keep my blood flowing and my creative juices flowing.
Personal relationships can make or break us. They can lift us up, or keep us in a sour mood. In my case, I do my best to stay away from negative people and negativity in general. The energy of the people around you does in fact influence your energy.
Our physical well-being, on a holistic level, is important to maintain. Since I entered my thirties, I have noticed that sustaining proper physical health is increasingly difficult. I do not know how people in their sixties or seventies do it. This means personal grooming, watching your weight, going to the doctors often for checkups, and such.
Extending from our physical well-being, our psychological state is always key to keep in balance. Since my family on my father’s side has a history of schizophrenia and manic depression, it is essential for me to keep my mental health in check. For this, I meditate twice a day, occasionally visit a psychologist, and make sure I do not fall or believe in strange thoughts. It is widely known that our mental state affects our physical well-being, and so I try to maintain both.
How people deal with stress is another essential factor in having a healthy life. Some people release their anger and frustration, while others try to remain cool in the face of adversity. I try to be on the latter end of stress. As I said before, I meditate daily, but also I try to be in a meditative state throughout the day. As soon as something troubles me, I do my best to get into a inner place where I am calm and balanced. It is easier said than done, but this attitude aids me in countless moments.
As one of my philosophies of a healthy life, I believe we should do things in balance. Going to extremes is often the root cause of issues. Even if we really enjoy doing an activity, pushing our bodily and mental limits is not the best idea. This can cause strain on our well-being. I used to play chess nonstop in highschool, and I grew unhealthy because of this. This obsession taught me to always be balanced in what I do.
We all have ideas about what it means to lead a healthy life. For me, considering physical and mental well-being, relationships, stressors, and balance are the top ways I aim to be healthy overall.