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For years we have compartmentalised mental and physical health and looked at them almost entirely separately. But medical science is now wising up to what alternative practitioners have known for centuries – you can’t have a healthy person without treating the mind and the body together.

The mind and body are intrinsically linked. For starters, your mind lives inside your body. And not just inside your skull. The neurons that transmit information are located all around our bodies, and, whilst a pretty hefty number are indeed contained within our brains, many more can be found all over our bodies in places like the gut and the heart.

When we talk about knowing something in our gut or our heart, it’s not just flowery language. It’s actual science. Those sayings stem from a time when we understood just how closely interlinked our brains and bodies were; but somehow in recent years it’s been considered more “scientific” to discuss the brain as an entirely separate and isolated organ, and the inner workings of our mind as processes that happen quite apart from the internal activities of our bodies. Which is clearly inaccurate.

The relationship between physical and mental health

Our mental wellbeing has an impact on our physical health, just as our physical health impacts our mental wellbeing. Those under extreme stress are more likely to develop cancer, and people suffering from depression are at an increased risk of coronary heart disease. Similarly, experiencing a long-term health condition can lead to depression, anxiety and social isolation.

It can be incredibly hard to treat one without the other. Exercise, for instance, has been well-documented to help relieve depression, but someone experiencing chronic pain or a condition that restricts their mobility is likely to find it difficult to exercise.

The inescapable fact is that you are a whole person, and no part of your body lives in isolation from the rest. To be the best version of yourself you can be, you need to look after yourself as a single entity, not a collection of assorted parts.

Taking a holistic approach

When it comes to looking after your health, then, you need to think holistically. What energises and boosts you physically will almost certainly also positively impact your mental wellbeing. Likewise, the activities that nourish your mind can benefit your physical health. Certain practises, such as yoga, meditation, acupuncture and massage have been shown to benefit mental and physical health at the same time. Finding the right combination of therapies and activities to meet all your needs can be the key to your wellbeing.

At Anahata, we take a holistic approach with every one of our clients. We are lucky to have a range of practitioners under one roof, who are able to look at your needs as a whole and identify an approach tailored to you. What’s more, as experts in alternative therapies, our Clinic Directors are happy to chat to you, for free, before you begin any treatment to fully understand your individual situation and recommend the therapies, and therapists, that will best suit your requirements.

It’s not unusual to be experiencing issues with both your physical and mental wellbeing. Sometimes they’re connected, sometimes they’re not. But wellness in all areas can ebb and flow, and we can be put out of our natural alignment for a variety of reasons. Our mission is to get you back to living your best life, in every way.

For a no-obligation chat about how you can look after your mind and body together, give us a call on 01273 698687.