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What is physical health? Why is it important?

When we think of health we usually immediately think of the physical body. 

Some words that come to mind right away are: 

  • Diet 

  • Movement / exercise 

  • Sleep 

  • Vitamins 

  • Drug use

  • “Symptoms” 

  • Sickness/illness

  • Weight 

  • Primary Care Provider/Doctor or Nurse practioner 

  • WEB mD ------- just kidding but I know you’ve tried to diagnose yourself through google at least one time in your life  (DISCLAIMER: please don’t self diagnose!)

These words probably because we usually associate our physical health with “going to the doctor” but there is much more to that.

Physical health is very important.  

Today's definition of physical health can consider everything ranging from the absence of disease to fitness level. As mentioned before, physical health is interconnected with the other areas of your well-being. It’s been scientifically proven that if your physically well, it will help improve to your mental health ( and vice versa). This would also mean poor self-care would result in poor mental health.

Certain things like a balanced diet, proper sleep, and removing unhealthy habits such as abusing substances are some of the basic physical health elements that can promote mental and physical well-being. So let’s dig into those.

Physical activity: Most healthy people should be active on a regular basis; yes this means daily! This should be well rounded mix of  physical activity at your leisure and intentional structured exercise. 

Example(s) of leisurely exercise: hiking, biking, swimming and walking.

Example(s) of structured exercise: strength training, running, and sports. 

Rest and sleep:Rest is crucial. Its important to have a balance between being physical but also allowing the body to relax is just as important. Spending time relaxing or taking short naps can help reenergize and rejuvenate the body. Health sleep habits should have at least 7-9 hours. Consistent sleep that is much shorter or longer than this duration, or is low quality, could be result of stress. If it appears to be something more concerning, please reach out to a professional. 

Nutrition and diet:A well-balanced diet should contain the following:

-Carbohydrates           -Proteins         - Fats               -Vitamins        -Minerals


It is important to drink as water as much as possible. You can research how much is good for your specific weight and height. Some people don’t really like drinking water but guess what? Your body needs it!

You should have snacks throughout the day and meals throughout the day that are healthy in portion.

Alcohol and drugs:DON’T DO DRUGS! Substance affect the way you behave, the way your body functions, and how your body processes information.  There is a divided opinion about certain substances, like marijuana which offers an array of benefits to the body. However, aside from that opiates, stimulants, amphetamines I would highly suggest you do not take unless prescribed. People who struggle with addictive personalities / tendencies should avoid them. I say this because certain substances can lead to a physical or mental dependence.  If you’re ever prescribed anything it’s VERY important to do your own research to understand the risks and side effects.

Medical self-care:Basic items, such as bandages, lozenges, and over-the-counter pain-relieving medications, should be easily accessible from home. You can get these at CVS, Wal-mart, Target, Rite aid and other local pharmacies. 

Long-term coughing, fevers, or other conditions should be addressed through your doctor if they persist. Seek emergency treatment if and signs and symptoms are significant or life-threatening. Please don’t go to the emergency room for minor issues. Call your Primary Care for advice prior to. During COVID19 they are trying their best to address all clients. 

Studies are showing more and more that a holistic approach to health – intertwining physical, social, emotional, and mental health  (as this website will continue to explore)– is necessary overall health. 

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