6 Easy ways to improve your wellbeing with Self Care
By Tatum Souza
The practice of taking action to preserve or improve one's own health.
Diet: It's the latest study to show that food can influence mental health. There's fresh evidence that eating a healthy diet, one that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables and limits highly processed foods, can help reduce symptoms of depression. (Harvard Medical School)
Want to learn more? Check out the NHS Eat Well Guide
Exercise: Aerobic exercises, including jogging, swimming, cycling, walking, gardening, and dancing, have been proved to reduce anxiety and depression. These improvements in mood are proposed to be caused by exercise-induced increase in blood circulation to the brain and by an influence on the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and, thus, on the physiologic reactivity to stress. (The Journal of Clinical Psychology)
Want to learn about at home Aerobic Exercise? Check out Healthline Home Aerobic Exercises
Sleep: Although scientists are still trying to tease apart all the mechanisms, they've discovered that sleep disruption — which affects levels of neurotransmitters and stress hormones, among other things — wreaks havoc in the brain, impairing thinking and emotional regulation. In this way, insomnia may amplify the effects of psychiatric disorders, and vice versa. (Harvard Medical School)
Want to learn more about how to improve sleep? Check out National Sleep Foundation Article
Meditation: Although meditation still isn’t exactly mainstream, many people practice it, hoping to stave off stress and stress-related health problems. Mindfulness meditation, in particular, has become more popular in recent years. The practice of mindful meditation involves sitting comfortably, focusing on your breathing, and then bringing your mind’s attention to the present without drifting into concerns about the past or future. (Harvard Medical School)
Want to combat stress and anxiety with meditation? Check out this guided meditation
Journaling: Several studies have shown journaling can cause a significant improvement in mental and physical health. First, journaling is just a way to record your thoughts and feelings. Second, deciding to journal is a great way to improve your wellbeing. (Psychology Today)
Want to learn journaling techniques? Check out PT Journaling for Mental Health
Reading: Books are an invaluable but underutilized resource that can increase empathy, enhance recovery and inspire those with mental health difficulties. As such, reading should be encouraged for everybody, but particularly those with mental illness—whether through formal bibliotherapy groups or individual prompting from family, friends or clinicians. (Psychology Today)
Want to read about mental health? Check out 32 Best Books for Improving Mental Health
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