I think especially today in the chaotic world in which we live, it’s important to ponder the question, “Can Happiness Improve Your Health? Happiness is an important ingredient in any healthy life. Many studies indicate happiness does play a major role in your health, whether it’s living a healthy lifestyle or reducing the amount of chronic pain – happiness is the solution to many of our health woes.
Encourages Healthy Living
According to studies, happier people are almost twice as likely to eat more fresh vegetables than people who say they are not happy. Eating more produce definitely improves your health over eating a diet high in processed food, bad fat, salt and sugar.
When you eat better, you have more energy. Being and feeling negative or sad can actually drain your energy while being happy can give you more energy!
Eating better, moving more, and feeling happy also increase your ability to fight off illness and disease because your immunity is improved. One study showed that people who say they are happy are able to fight off illness faster than people who say they are mostly sad and depressed. They found that when exposed to a cold virus, happy people were three times less likely to get the cold!
If you’re happy, you have a lot less to keep you up at night, to worry about, and so you live with less stress. It goes even further than that however, because happy people tend to report less stress even when they are facing stressful events in their lives. Because of the strength that happiness gives you, you will tend to experience less stress.
Protects Cardiovascular Health
Because you’re eating better and moving more as a byproduct of feeling happy, you are, as a result, protecting your cardiovascular health. You’ll be less likely to suffer a heart attack, stroke, or other issues related to heart health and your cardiovascular system.
Because you’re eating right, exercising more, and you’re feeling great about life, you will likely live longer. One long-term study tracked the lives of 32,000 people to find out who lived longer, the people who report happiness, or the people who report being less happy. It’s not surprising that happy people tend to live 14 percent longer. The Blue Zones of the world are fascinating and reinforce these findings. People living in the Blue Zones live to be 100+ and are engaged and active!
People who live with chronic pain admittedly have the right to feel down about it. However, the fact is people who report being happy tend to deal with their chronic pain (and other illness) more effectively than those who were not happy to begin with.
When you are happy, you’re more likely to eat right, drink enough water and move. If you are having difficulty maintaining your happiness, take steps to determine what you can do to improve your mood and your mindset. Happiness is certainly influenced by your circumstances, but how you choose to react to those circumstances can affect every aspect of your life and your health.
How may I serve you in your quest for optimal mental and physical health?
Cheryl A Major
Cheryl A Major lives in Westford and is a Certified Nutrition and Wellness Consultant. Her TV show, Thin Strong Healthy, airs on WestfordCat and is an offshoot of her blog http://ThinStrongHealthy.com Cheryl offers ongoing information, live and online courses and personal health coaching to help you feel better and be healthier. Follow Cheryl on Twitter @CherylAMajor. She is also a full time residential Realtor with Coldwell Banker with more than 25 years experience.
Her new book, “Eat Your Blues Away” in which she chronicles her recovery from depression is now available on Amazon in both Kindle and paperback!