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A Healthy LIfe, a Healthy Mind: How to Prevent Mental Illness by Living a Healthy Life

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Many Americans are experiencing some sort of mental illness in their lives. Specifically, 51 million of the adult American population, or about 17% of the entire population, is diagnosed with a mental illness. Five million of which are considered to be chronic. This is a decent chunk of the whole population, and the number continues to grow each day.

Many of these Americans are experiencing mental illness because of the way they live their lives. Although some of these people might have their mental illness through genetic means, the diathesis-stress model dictates that stress or environmental factors can affect how these mental illnesses start. For example, a person who has Alzheimer’s in their family has a possibility of getting this particular disease.

However, if they live a healthy lifestyle with proper diet, exercise, and keeping away from a tremendous amount of stress, then there is a considerable chance that illness will be delayed from occurring. In some cases, the illness can be abated altogether. This particular model shows that the way we live our lives can prevent mental illness from happening. So here are some ways to protect yourself from a mental illness that runs in your family.

Healthy Diet

A nutritious diet can sustain you and give you a fit body. It can also help you protect your mind from deteriorating.

Eating healthily can help you increase your concentration. It can also stimulate your senses so that you will be alert for the rest of the day. You can technically prevent forgetfulness and other problems that might occur while doing your daily activities by having these two traits. These can also help you control your mood.

Eating unhealthy, especially from fast food choices, can increase stress and depression rates, especially in older adults. Although many might think that eating these kinds of food is comforting, the damage it’s causing your body can affect your state of mind. For example, fast food and cholesterol can block your arteries and veins going to your brain, leading to stroke. Long periods of this blockage can lead to extreme forgetfulness or maybe schizophrenia.

Remember that if you eat unhealthily, it will damage your body and your mind as well. It will also eventually lead to triggering some mental illness you might have in your family.


As always, exercise plays a big role in everyone’s life. Exercise is connecting to not only a person’s physical health but in their mental health as well.

Exercise leads to the production of good hormones such as endorphins. These hormones can lead to elated feelings. These feelings can lead to the reduction of depression and other mood disorders. Additionally, exercise can help decrease your cortisol levels, which are known to be stress hormones. As we have stated earlier in the diathesis-stress model, stress plays a big role in triggering mental illness. So you should find ways to decrease it whenever you can.

Ultimately, when done alongside a healthy diet, exercise can help you function at an optimal level. It can also protect you from serious mental illnesses that run in your family.

woman holding dumbbells

Take Vitamins

Many vitamins in the medical world are known to prevent all kinds of illnesses. Although there aren’t necessarily vitamins that can help you prevent mental disorders, some of them can help you stay alert for the rest of the day. Some may even alleviate sources of stress just because you are functioning at an optimal level. These vitamins can be helpful if you’re looking for a way to keep yourself fit but don’t have the time to do it.

However, you mustn’t rely on these vitamins to keep you safe from mental illness. It can be a temporary means of keeping yourself healthy. But it should be used alongside a healthy diet and exercise to be fully effective.

Get Psychotherapy

Sometimes you’re going to need help, especially when you are stressed out. Thankfully many professionals are willing to help you out.

Psychotherapy is one of the best ways to get help. Some psychotherapists can work on depression if you are currently experiencing it. Some therapists work on anxiety. Some treatment centers can help. For example, if you’re suffering from an eating disorder, treatment centers specialize in binge eating. These treatment centers have all kinds of therapists that can help you with your disorder. They are also well-equipped with the necessary equipment to keep you healthy and fit.

Mental illness in the family can be stressful because you wouldn’t know whether you’re going to get it or not. However, by following these ways, you can prevent mental illness from happening. You can also delay it from happening if it’s inevitable. So don’t lose hope.

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