Mental health is one of the most important aspects of a person’s life. There are also other various vital aspects of an individual that must be present before an individual can be considered to have overall optimal health and wellbeing. These aspects include:
- physical well being
- emotional well being
- psychological well being
- social well being
- and mental well being
The mental wellbeing of a person is one that is most often times ignored in this list as it does not easily present with physically obvious signs until it is well progressed to an extreme point. However, it is a very important part of overall health.
Mental health is responsible for a lot of processing in the human body. Processes such as, how we think, how we feel, how we act, how we respond to situations, relate with others and also how and why we make any decision is highly dependent on the state of a person’s mental health. As such, it is very important to prioritize your mental health.
Signs Of Dysfunction In Mental Health
As ‘insignificant’ as people tend to take this aspect of health, a little dysfunction in the state of your mental health can lead to an affectation in every other aspect of the person’s wellbeing, therefore bringing down the total level of health of an individual.
A problem with the mental state of a person will most likely not present as a large significant sign at the onset, it is more associated with little warning signs which if ignored now brings about a more damaging dysfunction in the body.
Some of these warning signs that come with mental health imbalance, amongst many others, include;
- A change in dietary intake routines
- Gradual withdrawal from people and activities
- Frequent instances of aches without specific causes
- Frequent instances of mood swings and emotional imbalances
- A loss of interest in everyday tasks
- Lingering thoughts of harm and falsehoods.
Ayurveda and mental health
Ayurveda is a widely practiced ancient mode of balancing lifestyle modifications and diet intake to balance health and therefore lead to an optimal healthy lifestyle. Ayurveda works based on the principle that the human body is made up of five different component elements that serve to keep it balanced all through the lifetime.
According to Ayurvedic practices, an imbalance in a specific element in the body will lead to a subsequent imbalance in the quality of health of that individual. As such, these five elements are grouped into three main body types according to their level of dominancy in that body.
One major aspect in which the practices of Ayurveda also works for us in mental health as more associated with a balance in mental health is the water element of Ayurveda. With stress known as a major cause for mental health imbalance, Ayurveda helps to combat this by relieving the level of stress in individuals through various practices.
Tips to boost your mental health
Change in mindset
The thoughts you feed your mind on goes a long way in determining your overall positive outlook at life. Positively transitioning your thoughts pattern from negative thoughts to more positive thoughts will go a long way in boosting your mental health. This you can achieve by constantly meditating on positive thoughts at all times, choose not to dwell on negative occurrences that may be happening around you.
Modify your diet intake
As much as a lot of people do not realize this, what you intake is one way or the other very responsible for your output. This above statement is also very much applicable in the case of mental health also. There are various food substances that have been shown to be quite effective in boosting an individual’s mental health, especially mineral substances.
What are minerals that could be helpful in boosting your mental health? Minerals such as zinc, magnesium and iron are known for their effects on neurological function, which by extension, has an impact on mental health. As such, the intake of substances rich in these minerals is very much beneficial to the mental health of a person.
Foods rich in zinc include: Healthy pasture-raised meats, Oysters, legumes like chickpeas, lentils and beans all contain substantial amounts of zinc. Seeds contain significant amounts of zinc including hemp seeds, squash seeds, pumpkin and sesame seeds (13, 14). Eggs, nuts & Dark Chocolate also make the list of foods high in zinc. Just make sure that when choosing eggs you opt for pasture-raised instead of conventionally-farmed eggs. When choosing chocolate, beware of added sugar and chemicals.
Foods rich in Magnesium include: Dark Chocolate, Avocados, Nuts,
legumes like chickpeas, lentils and beans all contain substantial amounts of Magnesium, seeds of all types, fatty fish like salmon, mackerel and halibut, bananas, and leafy greens.
Foods rich in iron include: Red Meat, Liver, Turkey, Apricots,
legumes like chickpeas, lentils and beans all contain iron. Consuming foods high in Vitamin C in conjunction with eating other foods high in iron can improve the body’s ability to absorb the mineral.
Go out more
The role of sunlight in maintaining a person’s health cannot be overemphasized. Through exposure to sunlight, the body receives vitamin D which is a great means through which the body releases mood-improving chemicals into the body, thereby lifting the individual’s spirits and boosting mental health.
If you cannot expose your skin to the sun for at least 15 minutes per day you can also supplement with VitaminD3.
Always remember, that sun is best and using supplements is not your body’s first choice.
Engage in activities you enjoy
By engaging in activities you enjoy, you tend to not dwell on unpleasant situations around you as you are carried away into these activities. Another great activity means that is being encouraged is by exercising. Exercising has been shown to be a great mood booster for individuals.
Reduce your stress level
Reducing the level of stress you undergo is another means of indirectly aiding your mental health. Stress are automatic means through which the body and mind are put in an imbalance, therefore by reducing the level of stress in the body, the mind is made lighter, thereby improving the mood.
Above all, one important thing to note is the fact that you are not above help! Therefore, you should not make it a big deal to consult your physician if the level of imbalance to your mental health is on the high side, especially if these simple tips do not seem to work for them.