March 3, 2017

A healthy mind in a healthy body: The benefits of a healthy lifestyle for the mind

(Part 2 of 2)

Being diagnosed with prostate cancer causes stress and a wide range of intense emotions, from sadness and frustration to denial and despair.

This can be a difficult situation to manage, but it is worth remembering that maintaining good physical health and a healthy lifestyle are great ways of preventing depression. Here are a few benefits this can have on your mental health.

Sleep fights stress

Having prostate cancer likely makes you stressed out. In order to be able to relax, prioritize getting good sleep every single day. One of our previous articles discussed several ways to foster sleep.

Maintaining a rich social life and a healthy diet are other strong defenses against stress, anxiety, and depression. That is why it is important to keep seeing your friends, interact socially, and eat well even if you are suffering from prostate cancer.

To reduce your stress levels, stay away from drinks containing stimulants, such as coffee and energy drinks, as much as possible. The latter are full of salt and sugar, which will harm your sleep and your general health.

Manage your lifestyle

Your lifestyle includes your daily habits and plays an important role in life expectancy. That is why it deserves special attention. While several other factors, such as genetics and the environment, are also relevant to mental health issues, it is the lifestyle that influences an individual’s well-being very strongly. The good news is that lifestyle is actually something we can control.

Analyze your habits

One of the ways to improve the lifestyle is to pay close attention to one’s habits in order to determine if they are beneficial to your health. It is also advisable to engage in 30 minutes of physical activity per day, to eat well, to neither smoke nor drink in excess, and to get at least 8 hours of sleep per night. Of course, there would be some variation from time to time, but the idea here is to maintain a healthy lifestyle that enhances physical and psychological well-being.

It has been shown that a healthy lifestyle can make a world of difference in a person’s ability to handle potentially overwhelming problems once one learns they have prostate cancer.

Inspired by the blog of David Desjardins

David Desjardins is a frequent contributor to L'Actualité, Vélo Mag, and Entrée Principale on Radio-Canada. He is the editor of NotreSanté.ca.

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