World Mental Health Day 2023: A Sedentary Lifestyle Can Affect Your Mental Wellbeing, Heres How
World Mental Health Day 2023: Extended periods of sitting and inactivity can harm brain health, further aggravating mental well-being.
World Mental Health Day 2023: Extended periods of sitting and inactivity can harm brain health
Mental health awareness is rising day by day. Post covid, there has been a lot of rise in understanding about self and being aware of what's happening with both mental and physical health. As it is rightly said mental and physical health or like two sides of the same coin and hence an issue with one of the following leads to severe complications and side effects.
As we say an empty mind is the devil's workshop. A sedentary lifestyle can affect your mental as well as physical health.
The sedentary lifestyle and its impact on mental health
A sedentary lifestyle, characterized by prolonged periods of sitting or low physical activity, profoundly impacts mental health. In a world where a significant portion of the population spends a substantial part of their day seated, the ramifications on mental well-being cannot be overstated. Lack of physical activity can lead to mind-blocks, anxiety, overthinking, comparison, self-doubt, and self-criticism. An idle mind can indeed become a breeding ground for negative thoughts and mental health challenges.
Negative effects of prolonged sitting on brain health
Extended periods of sitting and inactivity can harm brain health, further aggravating mental well-being. Studies have shown that a sedentary lifestyle is associated with a decline in cognitive function, memory impairment, and an increased risk of conditions such as depression and anxiety. Additionally, a lack of physical activity can disrupt the balance of neurotransmitters and chemical messengers in the brain, including dopamine, adrenaline, and serotonin, which are crucial for regulating mood and overall mental health.
Incorporating physical activity for improved mental health
To counteract the adverse effects of a sedentary lifestyle on mental health, individuals should strive to incorporate more physical activity into their daily routines. Activities such as gardening, cooking, cleaning, and pet care offer therapeutic benefits and aid in diverting negative thoughts and stress. Setting a daily schedule that encompasses physical, mental, emotional, and societal growth activities can help individuals maintain balance and foster a sense of accomplishment, contributing positively to mental well-being.
Role of regular exercise in cognitive function and emotional well-being
Regular exercise plays a pivotal role in maintaining cognitive function and emotional well-being. Allocating at least an hour for physical fitness or enjoyable activities can significantly reduce stress levels, enhance neurotransmitter functioning, and elevate mood. Exercise is known to stimulate the release of endorphins, the body's natural mood lifters, and support a healthy balance of neurotransmitters, promoting emotional stability and cognitive clarity. Engaging in physical activities ultimately nourishes both the body and the mind, fostering a healthier, more balanced mental state.
Mrs. Rucha Shrikhande Divekar, Consultant, psychologist specialised in clinical psychology at Ruby Hall clinic
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