When I started this journey for a strong body and a healthy mind, I focussed a lot of my attention on training – swimming faster, lifting weights, losing weight – and somewhere along the way I forgot about striving for a healthy mind.
But what exactly does it mean to have a healthy mind? Did I have to do something different? Crosswords? Puzzles? In short, how could I obtain a healthy mind? So I did some research and it turns out that by exercising for a minimum of thirty minutes a day, five days a week, I am keeping my mind healthy. Let me explain.
David Linden, Professor of Neuroscience at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, stated that doing puzzles uses only a small part of the brain, and doesn’t do anything for the rest. Aerobic exercise, by contrast, has several effects.
Exercise causes all the blood vessels in the body, including in your brain, to dilate. This changes the metabolic capacity of the brain. Exercise also makes the brain secrete certain chemicals which help keep neurons healthy and able to change. Plus, after doing exercise you feel great.
There is a Latin phrase that goes ‘mens sana in corpore sano’ which basically means that having a sound body is likely to lead to a sound mind. Therefore, exercising for an hour five times a week as I do should ensure I have and maintain a sound mind. Exercising is something everyone should fit into their life no matter what.
But exercise, though awesome for the brain and body, isn’t the only thing your mind and body need to stay healthy. I saw this picture and have to agree with it. Every single one of us needs to get their daily helpings of these six things:
(courtesy of sun-gazing.com)
So while exercise is vital when it comes to having and maintaining a healthy mind and body, no one should neglect the other five items. Having a healthy mind is also about getting good food into your body, healthy, organic food and clean water; getting the rest you need as well as getting out in the air and absorbing the sunshine. Humans aren’t designed to sit for hours at a desk eating artificial food under fluorescent lights.
So here’s my wish for you today. Take some time for yourself. It’s important. Go out for a walk, be with nature, get some sunshine, breathe in life. Do whatever makes you feel happy and try to make sure it involves one of the six items in the above picture. Because healthy is happy.
Hope you’ve all had a great week and enjoy the weekend.
Bye for now!