A healthy mind in a healthy body

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The phrase mens sana in corpore sano, which translates as “a healthy mind in a healthy body,” goes back to the Roman poet Juvenal, who wrote it about 1900 years ago. So for at least that long, civilized people have regarded this as the ideal of Health.

In more recent decades, we have added to this a keener awareness of the need for preventing problems, not just healing them. While the ancients were more susceptible to disease and perhaps to physical violence, we are more exposed to threats in the form of sugar- and fat-laden diets, smoking, environmental toxins, lack of exercise, stress, and high-speed vehicle accidents – all things that we can reduce our exposure to.

These new threats, as well as the old ones we still face, affect not just the length of life but its quality. By the time most of us start approaching retirement age, we have come to feel that quality matters as much as quantity, and perhaps more. And while there are many other elements to quality of life in one’s older years (represented by Spirit, Purpose, Love, Avocation, and Security), Health is, in many, many ways, fundamental to all of them.

It’s not quite true that if you don’t have your health, you don’t have anything. But it is true that chronic physical or mental / emotional problems can plant huge obstacles in the way of wellbeing in these other domains.

Health relates to:

Topics and sub-topics under Health

You probably already know what you should be doing. Understanding the specific steps you should take, resolving to take those steps, and then maintaining an appropriate level of discipline, are the keys to getting there.

The magnificence and complexity of modern medicine can cure you or kill you – or both. How to find the care you want and need, while stepping around the medical landmines.

Aging generally means at least a modest loss of mental power over time, but we can take steps to minimize this while continuing to learn to accentuate the positive in life.

Our thoughts and emotions sometimes merely cast shadows on our sense of wellbeing. In the worst cases they can completely disrupt our ability to function. And frequently they fall somewhere in between. But there are things we can do about it.