When it comes to being your own health hero, it’s more than what you eat and how you move. It’s also about doing the things that make your life better, regardless of what science says about it. That’s why Dr. Nandi is talking about spirituality, which can play a huge role in staying well and improving ailments, both physically and mentally. Be your own health hero and get the most out of your life.
One of the biggest risks for depression is isolation, which is one of the things spirituality fights. From attending social events to participating in volunteer opportunities, spirituality makes you part of a spiritual community and makes you feel as though you’re part of a group, which defeats isolation and depression.
Religion and spirituality give people hope, which directly counters the hopelessness that creates depression. More than that, spirituality also increases optimism and makes you more forgiving, which improves your mood and your life.
Giving Up to a Higher Power
When people give up their struggles to God or a higher power, they become less distracted by negative thoughts, allowing them to gain control over their lives. This positivity helps people relax and lower stress, which decreases blood pressure. Blood flow is increased and memory is improved, as are your cognitive abilities.
Prayer is its own form of meditation. It helps you relax, but also does much more. Prayer turns off the stress response—what’s commonly called the fight or flight mechanism—and allows the body and immune system to recharge. This also lowers the amount of cortisol, the stress hormone, which does damage at the cellular level.
No matter what you believe, believing in something bigger than yourself improves your health. It reduces your stress level, allows you to fight infections better, and helps you live a more fulfilling life. Become your own health hero and spend time in reflection and prayer.
- Your focus doesn’t have to be on God or organized religion, since the belief in anything greater than yourself, including the interconnectedness of life and nature, brings the same health benefits
- It’s not just that you believe in something, but it is also the repetition of taking time every day to practice it
- With the hope and optimism caused by spirituality, people not only have fewer illnesses, but they tend to live longer
- People who embrace their spirituality are more forgiving than their non-religious counterparts
- Spirituality also offers social support, which is a huge benefit to anyone