The One Definition Of 'Health' That People Always Overlook

The One Definition Of 'Health' That People Always Overlook

It doesn't have to be all or nothing— health can come in shades of grey.

29
The One Definition Of 'Health' That People Always Overlook
Pixabay

Recently, I’ve seen a rise in Odyssey articles about health, fitness, weight loss and clean eating. These pieces seem to fare particularly well in a society that thrives on diet culture, comparison and appearance as a determinant of self-worth.

While being "healthy" is essential to leading a fulfilling lifestyle, it is important to consider that the term may mean different things to different people. Messages in the media make health out to be this grand destination, filled with "clean eating," a lean figure, and inevitably, a positive self-image. The thing is, health is such a relative term. What is healthy for one person may be destructive to another.

According to Merriam-Webster, "health" is defined as "the condition of being sound in the body, mind, or spirit." Not once does the dictionary reference clean eating, dieting, maintaining a certain weight or behaving in a particular way to validate this so-called state of well-being. This is not to say that some of the habits practiced by fitness bloggers or trends discussed in the media can be beneficial to one's overall health, but rather to acknowledge that health is more than a physical condition.

Yes, there is a such thing as a "healthy" weight, there are choices that can be made to pursue a "healthier" lifestyle and regular physical activity has been known to bring cardiovascular benefits, bone strength, psychological stability and a decreased risk for certain cancers, but there is a line between doing what is in your best interest and caving into the pressures of diet culture.

One of the most often neglected aspects of health is the beauty of moderation. Some of the healthiest people I know are not those on low-carb diets or weight loss kicks, but rather people who accept that it doesn't have to be all or nothing - health can come in shades of grey. To me, it means listening to what my body wants and needs and figuring out how to meet those needs in an appropriate way.

If I'm craving a cookie, I eat a cookie. If I feel like I want to move, I take a walk. If I'm stressed or overwhelmed, I take some time to myself to journal. I have developed trust in my body's ability to let me know what I need and keep me at a weight that best serves the lifestyle I lead.

I am anti-diet and a strong believer that that health has nothing to do with size. Health comes from being at peace with yourself and in touch with your mind, body and spirit. It is the vaguest of terms and the most relative to individual needs.

Unless a medical professional tells me otherwise, I intend to continue meeting my needs this way. I respect and honor that my journey to health may be different than someone else's, and that is okay. If we could stop pretending that health is one-size-fits-all and respect that there is more than one way to be healthy, diet culture and body shaming would lose some of their traction. What a radical idea it would be to promote self-acceptance and care instead of preaching about a need to change?

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

Being a pharmacy technician never held as many risks as it does now. Exposure too hazardous conditions were little to none, and garbing up was only conducted in IV compounding. But, now, in order to give nurses the medications they need to help their patients, they need us, pharmacy technicians.

Keep Reading... Show less

TikTok was banned by the president, but Instagram is here with its newest feature called Reel. Many of us are still wondering why TikTok was being banned in the first place. Was it all the dangerous TikTok trends? It was because of a security concern, but not in the way you might think.

TikTok is owned by Dancebyte, which is a China-owned company. Basically, just like any other app, TikTok collects the user's data. The main question to ask yourself when investing in any app or marketing tools who will be owning my data? So yes, China currently owns all the TikTok user's data worldwide.

Keep Reading... Show less
Disney

I've always been a huge Disney villain fan — whether it was for their cryptic one-liners, enviable outfits, or sidekick banter. Some of the most iconic lines from cinematic history have been said by the characters we love to hate and occasionally dress up as once a year.

The fear-mongering Gaston I now find hilariously cringe-worthy is now charming and oftentimes considered by fans as rightfully justified in his actions. Die-hard fans of the Disney villain fan club claim alternate egos in their favorite evil characters, adopting their hilarious witticisms into everyday life.

Keep Reading... Show less

Social media is something many of us have been addicted to (whether we want to believe it or not) since the moment we got it. I remember getting Facebook at 10. Instantly I was hooked. I loved being able to share my life with people, a little too much in my opinion, and I loved being able to see how/what other people were doing all the time.

Keep Reading... Show less

-Having struggled with acne prone skin for years, I was cautious to try a new serum on top of the other products I've come to trust.

Keep Reading... Show less

- I have extremely sensitive skin, which is why I have always resorted to a plant-based organic beauty line such as Radha Beauty.

- Radha Beauty won me over years ago when I was looking for organic skincare brands.

- I was so excited to see they launched a new line incorporating USDA organic rosehip oil, so when their PR team sent me some, I could not have been more thrilled.

- After a week of using the products, my face felt as smooth as a baby's, looked more glowy than ever, and even cured some of my summer sunburn.

Radha Beauty isn't just a best-selling beauty brand on Amazon — it's a USDA-certified organic beauty brand I live by, and anyone who knows me knows I am all about holistic wellness.

Typically, it only takes three days for me to tell if a skin product is working or not because I have extremely sensitive skin. It's also why I have always stuck by plant-based organic beauty lines such as Radha Beauty.

Keep Reading... Show less

I have definitely had my fair share of breakups. I broke up with my high school sweetheart my second semester of college (he was cheating on me), I had a breakup with another guy I thought I was going to marry, and others in between. Regardless of whether you're the one doing the dumping or being dumped, breakups can HURT.

Keep Reading... Show less

I am not in any way any sort of medical expert. These are just some tricks that work for me and have worked for others who also suffer from anxiety. These may not work for everyone, but I do hope these help some people in their fight against anxiety.

Keep Reading... Show less

I have always felt left out because of how I look and who I am. I have always felt like the elephant in the room, literally. I have always been shamed for my size. For the longest time, I cared so much about what I wear and who I wore certain things in front of. I never wanted to wear shirts that would show a lot of my arm, located above my elbow. I wouldn't wear shorts that didn't go to the tip of my knees, at least. I never wore anything remotely tight, where you could see every curve, roll, or imperfection. I was so insecure about myself, and not many of my friends knew.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

Your Social Activism May Actually Benefit From A Cleansing Social Media Detox

In the craziest year of our lives, sometimes there's value in taking a break.

We are living through, unequivocally, one of the most dangerous, unstable, chaotic periods of any of our lives. From COVID-19 to crises of police brutality to the mass exploitation of the poor by mega-corporations, the world outside seems to be looking more dystopic every day. What can be done about it? For many, activism involves heavily posting on social media to keep others aware. However, this comes with a net negative cost — increased levels of anxiety, depression, and hopelessness about the state of the world. Why might this be? After all, in past eras activists have endured comparable and greater levels of abuse and relentless torment from oppressors. Why, now, are people getting so easily burnt out?

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments