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Healthy Body Means Healthy Mind: How An Informed Diet Leads to Mental Wellness

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Written by: Jackie Edwards

There’s a stronger correlation between our physical health and mental well-being than we think. Our bodies are sensitive to what they consume, and the content of our diet can severely impact the way our brain functions. While it’s believed that 95% of people fail their diet, a statistic so bold that it’s difficult to prove its validity, what can’t be disputed is the effect food has on our hormone production and its significance to daily life and customs. Maintaining a consistent and healthy diet means eating food that’s both natural for our bodies and consistent with our own routine functions.

Healthy Body Means Healthy Mind

It’s known that the type of food our body metabolizes greatly impacts how efficiently the brain functions. But, our body’s metabolic process is influenced by more than just the food we ingest. Physical activity is central to how the body expends energy and nutrients obtained from food. Exercise has a tremendous impact on our physical well being beyond just staying in shape.

Studies have shown that elderly adults who remain physically active have larger hippocampus and greater spatial memory then inactive individuals. Exercise also functions as a natural antidepressant. Devising a steady exercise regimen that works along with other natural cognitive stabilizers can improve and prolong your mental performance and well being. When developing and executing a diet that’s intuitive to your life, it’s import to factor in exercise as a necessary component of your lifestyle.

Benefits of a Meat-Centric Diet

A 2018 food and health survey, conducted by the International Food Information Council Foundation, revealed that the average consumer is eating less fruits and vegetables then advised and are instead opting for more protein. This isn’t inherently an issue though, especially when it comes to impact on mental health. A psychiatrist was able to reverse their symptoms of fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, and migraines through eliminating most plants in their diet, and supplementing with portions of protein.

It’s also been claimed that shifting a once plant conscious diet to a primarily meat based one can have rapid, and beneficial, effects on an individual’s mental health. To know how a change in diet will impact your own body-chemistry means being at a point where you’re familiar with how your body comprehends and processes food. To achieve this, implementing intuitive eating to your diet is a recommended step towards achieving a healthy lifestyle.

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Know Your Body And Mind with Intuitive Eating

Intuitive Eating is less of a strict diet and more of a rethinking of how to approach eating. The methodology involves learning to distinguish between two types of hunger: physical hunger and emotional hunger. The former can be recognized as the natural cravings our body has when it needs food for reasons related to survival. The latter deals more with sensations of boredom or loneliness that lead us to eat, regardless of whether it’s necessary or not.

Most people start a diet to lose weight, but at times the root of the problem runs deeper. Intuitive eating encourages us to address bad mental habits along with physical habits, in regards to eating. From what research has been conducted on intuitive eating, improvements can be found in psychological wellness and maintaining consistent weight. Not only were individual’s body mass index (BMI) reduced, but overall perception of self image and grappling with anxiety improved.

Proper diet is more than just being conscious of quantity and content. It’s understanding your own relationship with food, and how it affects the way you see yourself.

Meet The Author

After taking a career sabbatical to become a mother, Jackie now writes full time on topics ranging from health and wellness, right through to news and current affairs. She has, in the past battled problems with anxiety and panic, and in her spare time she volunteers for a number of local charities that support people with mental health issues.