We could all use a helping hand towards better mental health and longevity
It’s not easy being a woman. There are a lot of roles we play, and most of them have come to us through guilt or the usual call of duty we have as women. It may be elderly parents, children or siblings. Juggling multiple balls in our hands happens to be something we’re pretty good at — although we probably won’t admit that it’s hard, and we don’t want that responsibility. But, something is inherent within us, in the form of a“nurturer” that stops us from turning away. Although this is something we’ve learnt to deal with, there is one way we can take control of how tired, run down and emotionally drained we are. Women’s mental health is more highly associated with dietary factors than men’s. Linda Begdache, assistant professor of health and wellness studies at Binghamton University, previously published research on diet and mood and suggested a high-quality diet improves mental health. Linda wanted to test how a customised diet can improve mood among men and women who are 30 years and over. This study considered different food groups and their role in mental health, dietary patterns, exercise & mental distress frequency. As the results were compiled, women’s mental health had a much higher association with dietary factors than men. In addition, mental health with exercise frequency was also associated with dietary and lifestyle patterns, supporting the need for customising diet and lifestyle factors to improve well-being. Beach says, “ We have found a general relationship between eating healthy, healthy dietary practices, and exercise, positively impacting mental well-being. But, on the other hand, unhealthy eating caused more mental distress in women than men — which shows that women are more likely to become susceptible to unhealthy eating.” Based on his particular study, the first point of call towards combating mental distress is through diet and exercise. Food items such as dark green leafy vegetables, as well as fruits, are associated with mental well being. However, the opposite is true when you eat more fast food. There is also an essential emphasis on exercise, which can significantly decrease negative associations with higher glycemic foods, fast foods and mental distress. This information is a great framework that can be adapted to any mature woman’s life — especially leading toward menopause.
As Hippocrates quoted, “Let food be thy medicine and let thy medicine be food”, and I could not agree more! If you want to get started in the right direction regarding food and exercise, here are some great ways to make it more manageable for a beginner.
One: Find an exercise that you like
I particularly love the gym and walking outdoors. Someone else may feel stifled with this regime and prefer walking on the beach or running. Find what you love doing most, and let that be the starting point along your exercise journey. It’s an exercise that helps you feel good, nothing that takes too much effort and a great deal of willpower daily.
Two: Adapt some greens into your life
It’s not too hard to add green veggies to our meals and even make a complete meal of our greens! I particularly love to add them to a salad or baked veggies. Also, add some healthy fats like avocado and olive oil. These particular fats are perfect for women and provide more satisfaction for your appetite.
Three: Put an end to dieting
It doesn’t have to fall into the diet category. Healthy eating should be a lifestyle choice. You are taking the time to cook your food, making it fresh and nourishing your body and mind within a season. Think of it as a ritual towards your mental health and life success.
Four: Mental health distress
Sometimes it can get quite hard, and it won’t be as challenging when you arm yourself with some mental health building strategies. For example, I love to get a massage regularly, walk in the sunshine, or sit still on a chair while breathing deeply. This is my form of mental health distress. Find out something that calms you down, doesn’t take too much time and that you can do even when on the bus or train. That way, if an occurrence somehow triggers you in an important meeting — you can use the awareness of deep breathing as your source of relief. Please feel free to read more regarding this research piece here.
If you would like to read more articles like this or start writing your own, please sign up via my link. I’d love to see you on the other side. ???????? Sign up here for your medium subscription. I get a portion of your monthly fee at no extra cost to you, and it will go a long way in supporting me as a writer.
If you would like to express gratitude with coffee, send the love via this link.