BETTER HEALTH TODAY
What Actually Is Health?
What Does Good Health Mean?
The Old English word for ‘health’ was simply hale, meaning ‘wholeness’ or being whole, sound, or well.
A more modern definition created by the World Health Organization says that… “health is a state of complete physical, mental, and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”
More recently the definition presented by the WHO states that health is not a: “state of complete physical, mental and social well-being: Nor is it “merely the absence of disease or infirmity.”
To fully understand Health and the definitions of Health in our present age one must introduce an era embracing new understanding of disease at the molecular, individual, and societal level. Today, most people recognize Health can be divided into two broad aspects: Physical Health and Mental Health.
Physical Health or physical well-being simply means good body health which is healthy because of regular physical activity (exercise), good nutrition, and adequate rest.
Physical Health or physical well-being is something a person can achieve by developing components of a health-related lifestyle. This type of fitness would
Include: cardiorespiratory endurance, muscular strength, flexibility and body composition.
Other components of physical well-being may include proper nutrition, body weight management, abstaining from drug use, avoiding alcohol abuse, responsible sexual behavior, and getting the proper amount of sleep.
Mental health includes a person’s cognitive and emotional well-being. A person who does not enjoy good mental health usually has some sort of mental disorder.
Again according to the WHO, mental health is “a state of well-being in which the:
individual realizes his or her own abilities;
can cope with the normal stresses of life;
can work productively and fruitfully; and
Is able to make a contribution to their community.”
Unfortunately, measuring mental health has been a very subjective assessment. Often times it has been easier to tell what mental illness is, rather than mental health.
Most of us agree that mental health again refers to the “absence of mental illness.” Unfortunately that measurement varies greatly from individual to individual.
In reality mental health includes:
the ability to enjoy life;
the ability to bounce back from adversity;
the ability to achieve balance or moderation;
the ability to be flexible and adapt;
the ability to feel safe and secure; and
the ability to make the best of whatever you have.
Quite naturally each individual must personally learn the attributes of good health. You can go through life learning them the hard way or you can seek out advice or information that helps you develop a course of action. Developing a course of action seems like the BEST WAY.