Healthy is defined as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. A healthy person may still have a medical condition that requires treatment such as diabetes or back pain that is managed with medication, but they would also have a lifestyle that supports their health, including regular follow up appointments with their doctor, healthy eating habits, exercise and good coping skills for stress.
A healthy diet includes eating foods that are low in saturated fat and cholesterol, as well as limiting salt, sugar and total fat. This means choosing a wide variety of fruits, vegetables and whole grains, as well as lean meats and dairy. It is recommended that adults get 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity most days of the week. This can be broken down into 10-minute sessions if necessary. When considering the type of exercise, try to find something that is fun and enjoyable for you – this will help you stick with it.
Having supportive relationships and finding ways to manage stress is also important for maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Some people find this through socialising with friends, participating in a hobby or sport or spending time in nature. Others find relief through relaxation techniques such as meditation, deep breathing or prayer, or by talking with a therapist or psychologist.
Achieving and maintaining a healthy lifestyle isn’t always easy, and some people struggle to make positive changes. However, it is possible to improve your lifestyle gradually over time – start small and build up to achieve long-term benefits.
Healthy behaviours include following up with your doctor for regular exams and screenings, knowing what symptoms to look for and how to cope with them, and taking steps to avoid health risks such as smoking. Getting plenty of sleep and having good quality relationships with family and friends are also beneficial. Laughing and smiling at least once a day can reduce stress, lower blood pressure and boost moods. It is recommended that you drink eight to ten glasses of water per day.
There are many different definitions of healthy. A popular one is based on a person having a balanced diet, being physically active, getting adequate rest and managing their stress levels. However, a more complete definition of healthy is a biopsychosocial model that takes into account the physiological, psychological and social aspects of wellness. This definition of health is not universally accepted, but it is becoming increasingly recognised as an important concept to consider when promoting and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. As such, it is now a core component of the WHO Healthy Development Goals. –