There’s No One-Size-Fits-All Definition of Healthy
Dec 20, 2023
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Some ideas and ideals are related to what "health" actually means. We believe that in order to stay healthy, women need to have a certain weight, follow a certain diet, and achieve certain fitness and health goals.
But these ideals can actually put unnecessary stress on women. Thinking that you need to achieve these strict and often inaccurate ideals to be "healthy" can take a toll both mentally (in the form of anxiety or self-criticism) and physically (in the form of exhaustion or push). things are too hard).
The truth is that when it comes to women's health, there is no one-size-fits-all definition - these persistent stereotypes about what "healthy" means may actually prevent women from being the healthiest (and happiest!) Own.
Let's challenge some of the most common stereotypes about women's health - paint a truer and more accurate picture of a healthy woman in 2021:
Health and weight are not directly related.
Darlene Marshall, a personal trainer, wellness coach and host of the program, said: "Eating well, exercising regularly, going out, meditating and getting enough sleep - no matter the size, these are all building blocks of health and well-being. Events." Better than a good podcast.
Arguably the most common and persistent myth about women's health is that health is directly related to weight - the heavier a woman is, the less healthy she is by nature. But the truth is, health isn't just a number.
"Our health is closely related to cardiovascular, joint, digestive, and even mental health -- none of these are your weight labels," Marshall says.
The body mass index (Body Mass Index), commonly used to determine whether a woman is at a "healthy" weight, is also not a good tool for assessing overall health.
"Body mass index doesn't tell us much about our health. It's just based on the relationship between height and weight," says Jenny Bilski-Smith, a licensed MS in social work and certified intuitive eating consultant. So for example, "A person with a lot of muscle mass, but very little fat, is classified as obese. Body mass index does not take into account fat distribution and bone density."
"Furthermore, the number doesn't tell us how happy we are," Bilski-Smith continued. "For example, a person may have a 'healthy' body mass index, but an eating disorder -- or have
Serious illness can reduce appetite and lead to weight loss. "
What is the gist of this story? Being below a certain weight or BMI doesn't necessarily mean you're healthy -- above a certain weight or BMI doesn't necessarily mean you're unhealthy. So, if you really want to support your health, instead of focusing on your weight, focus on incorporating healthy habits into your routine.
Being healthy doesn't mean following the X diet.
Many enthusiasts believe that the only way for women to stay healthy is to follow a vegan, ketogenic, gluten-free or [insert dietary trend here] diet. But when it comes to nutrition, there is no one-size-fits-all solution.
A vegan diet may be the right diet for one woman, but not meat may be wrong for another. A ketogenic diet plan can leave one woman feeling completely satisfied and give her all the energy she needs to get through the week -- but leave another woman feeling tired, exhausted, and craving carbs.
The point is, every woman is different - so one woman's healthy diet may look completely different from another.
"Everyone is unique, so it doesn't make sense to assume that one nutritional approach will work for everyone," said FPMRS' FACOG's Dr. Terry Dunn, of Foothills Gynecology, Women's Health Clinic, Denver, Colorado, USA. owner.
To determine the healthiest diet for you, first consult with your doctor or nutritionist to find out what nutrients your body needs to function at its peak. "It's important that everyone is getting the vital nutrients they need for healthy bones, heart and other vital organs," Dunn says. From there, adjust your body to find the foods that make you feel your best.
"Don't try to follow a diet that doesn't work for you, but focus on listening to your body," says therapist Alexa Shank, a certified eating disorder specialist and owner of Practical Relief and Restorative Psychotherapy in Houston, Texas . "Adjust your inner cues and how your body feels before and after eating a certain food."
The point is, tracking how different foods make you feel—and incorporating more foods that make you feel energized, energized, and well-rounded—will help you build the healthiest diet.
Being healthy doesn't mean exercising every day.
There's no denying that fitness is an important part of women's health. But do you need to work hard every day to maximize the benefits of exercise? Actually it does more harm than good.
"Working hard every day means your body doesn't fully recover," says Marshall. "Gradually, your connective tissue, muscles, heart and other systems are under stress."
The "never miss a day at the gym" mentality can actually damage your health -- both in the short and long term.
"[Exercise] can lead to injury over time, but in the short term, it's a stress. It disrupts your mood, sleep and appetite," Marshall said. "If you're exercising for your health, the 'work hard every day or go home' mentality is the opposite of your own goals."
When it comes to fitness, there's no need to push yourself to the limit every day; the time it takes for your body to rest and recover is just as important as the time you spend actively exercising. So if you run a long run on Monday, take a rest on Tuesday. If you attended a boot camp class on Wednesday, you can relax on Thursday, do some yoga or take a leisurely walk in the neighborhood. Balance more intense exercise with more relaxing activities and rest periods; this way, you can benefit from a healthy and active lifestyle—while giving your body plenty of time to recover.
Healthy doesn't necessarily mean completely healthy.
Flicking through social media feeds, it's easy to assume that other people are living perfectly healthy lives. But the truth is, there is no such thing as perfection, including when it comes to health - the pursuit of perfect diet, fitness, and habits can actually be detrimental to your health, well-being, and happiness.
"Perfectionism in healthy habits can lead to obsessive thoughts and stereotyped behaviors that can end up draining your life," says Shank.
For example, let's say you decide to implement your "perfect" eating philosophy, which is to limit any foods or ingredients that you consider "unhealthy."
"While this may be possible in the short term, you can't be perfect forever," Shank said. "Attempting to do this can make it easier to 'burn out' and end up with a 'why bother' mentality... (which prompts you to) give up completely."
Instead of sticking to unrealistic standards of perfect health, try to relax a bit. So, for example, let's say you want to break your takeout habit and eat healthier home-cooked meals. Instead of blaming yourself when ordering pizza on a Friday night, focus on all the veggie combos you've made during the week, relax, and promise to come back tomorrow.
"Be kind to yourself," Schenk said. "If your plans change, or if your intentions don't work out, give yourself a little compassion. Shaming yourself won't help you make lasting lifestyle changes."
Bottom line? When it comes to getting healthier, focus on progress rather than perfection.