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15
There is a phenomenal
rise in the growth of ftness
clubs and gyms. People
have become conscious
of their body image that
they are willing to go
through the extra mile just
to achieve that sculptured
body. Almost every ftness
buff wants to achieve the
same fgure displayed by
models in the pages of the
magazines, on billboards,
on television, and on movie
screens.
People try to fnd
sensible and sustainable
ways to achieve and
maintain a physically ft
body. Yet what is often
overlooked is the need
to take care of another
important aspect of their
well-being: their emotional
health.
Having a healthy mind and spirit go well
with a healthy body
.
Emotional health is
considered an integral part of man’s overall
wellness
.
Neglecting your emotional health
can damage your physical health in the
process
.
Research has shown that one of
the leading contributors to illness is stress
caused by unresolved emotional issues
.
Psychologists believe that feelings or
emotions such as fear, joy, sadness, anxiety
and anger are mental responses to events,
circumstances, people, or our own thoughts
and memories
.
Tey course through
our conscious and unconscious beings
at all times, whether at critical junctures
or during seemingly inconsequential
moments of our lives
.
Biologists, on the other hand, tell us
that our emotions are rooted in self
-
preservation, triggering physiological
reactions that enable us to fnd food,
escape danger, and reproduce
.
Author
Daniel Goleman pointed out in his work,
Emotional Intelligence that ì
...
all emotions
are, in essence, impulses to act, the instant
plans for handling life that evolution has
instilled in us
.
Emotions have also evolved into facial
expressions and body language so that
each member of the group can signal his
or her wants and needs to other members
.
As John D
.
Mayer, a leading expert in
the study of emotions, has remarked
:
ìEmotions convey information
...
about
relationships
.
î
Our emotion can be so powerful that
it can even make us sick
.
It can also be
a means to gain healing
.
Emotions are
relayed to the immune system through the
autonomic nervous system
.
When people
experience anxiety, depression and other
painful emotions, the immune system can
be afected and may cause risk for a whole
host of illnesses
.
In the same way, having a
healthy emotional outlook in life can boost
the resistance against disease
.
Mayer has emphasized that people can
reason with emotions in the same way they
reason with cognitive information
.
It can
be said that a person can actually solve
emotional problems just as mathematicians
solve math problems, Mayer said
.
However, he also acknowledged that some
emotions, such as grief and anger, can
be harder to reason efectively with than
others
.
Ofentimes, identifying the various
emotions at play can be extremely difcult
.
Not many experts agree that human beings
are born with a full range of emotions
.
Instead, they theorize that people were
born with instincts and urges, along with
an innate capacity for feeling
.
As people
grow older, they acquire personalities and
nurture relationships with others, thus,
helping these instincts and urges develop
into full
-
fedged emotions
.
Just as emotional health can afect a
person’s physical health, the same is
true with one’s lifestyle making a direct
impact on emotional health
.
Vitamins
and minerals stimulates the production of
chemicals in the brain
.
Tese are known
as neurotransmitters that regulate our
physical and mental health functions,
including the way we process emotions
.
Minor defciencies in these nutrients can
lead to depression and irritability
.
Vitamin
and mineral defciencies also hamper our
ability to concentrate and stay motivated
.
Defnitely, unhealthy foods can adversely
afect emotional health
.
Excessive intake
of cafeine also causes physiological and
psychological side efects that are ofen seen
in people sufering from anxiety, while a
diet with too much sugar has been linked
to depression, aggression, and impaired
judgment
.
Many experts believe that people with
strong spiritual fervor tend to have
healthier immune systems and were less
prone to anxiety, depression, and high
blood pressure
.
It can be surmised that the
faith of religious adherents gave them an
enhanced sense of well
-
being which helped
reduce their levels of stress
.
Emotional health consists of fve key
components:
1
Being aware of your emotions. Emotionally healthy
people are in touch with their emotions and can identify
and acknowledge them as experience.
2
Being able to process your emotions. After connecting
with their emotions, emotionally healthy people develop
appropriate ways of expressing them.
3
Being sensitive to other people and their emotions and
having the ability to empathize. The ability to identify
their own emotions enables emotionally healthy people to
identify emotions in others and to have an intuitive sense
of what it feels like to experience them.
4
Being self-empowered. Emotionally healthy people
honor their emotions, which empowers them to fulfll
their goals.
5
Being in healthy relationships. Using their emotional
intelligence and empathy, emotionally healthy people
build and maintain strong, functioning relationships.
H