What to Choose: Mental Health or Physical Health?

Somya Verma

, Health A2Z


What is the definition of being fit? Is it just having physical fitness or mental fitness has any role to play, to be called fit? Here we will be debating the most crucial part of the discussion of health, which is important, mental health or physical health? World Health Organization defines health as a “state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity.” It hence becomes important to let our readers know how mental health and physical health are related to each other and cannot work exclusively for humans. The following writeup is an attempt to shed light upon the link and choice between mental health or physical health. It would cover the relationship and the difference between mental and physical health.


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Mental Health or Physical Health?


Mental health has been given more importance now as it has seen that those suffering from various mental illness has also seen a decline in their physical health. Many observations and study have proven that it is not easy to cure someone with a heart condition if they are highly depressed.


In a study done by the Mental Health Foundation said ” schizophrenia is associated with a tripled risk of dying from respiratory disease and a doubled risk of dying from a form of heart disease. Depression has been linked to a 50 percent increase in a person’s risk of dying from cancer and a 67 percent increase from heart disease. These conditions have a significant impact on life expectancies.” This definitely cancels outs any kind of confusion between mental health or physical health.



Here are some diseases discussed which pertain both to mental and physical health, and an understanding of how the mental state of these might affect the physical well being also:


Schizophrenia and Physical Wellness:


According to many studies and observation, it has been proved that those who suffer from this mental condition have a higher chance of smoking and getting prone to heart disease than the rest of the crowd. This is because in order to cope up with this condition they take the route to addiction and suffer from physical illness as well.


Depression and Body Changes:


When a person is depressed and stressed, there are high chances that panic attacks and anxiety attacks are regular visitors. At the same time, these also cause hormonal changes in the body and that leads to many health issues for a person. The risk of getting coronary heart problem increases and you may also choose to start substance abuse.


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Mental health and Immunity level:


According to studies it has been seen that people who suffer mental illness have a low immunity level. This can cause a particular individual prone to many chronic diseases like AIDS.


Florida State University study shows three major points of association, giving a clear knowledge about why it is wrong to make a choice between mental health or physical health.


  • Poor mental health is a risk factor for chronic physical conditions.


  • People with serious mental health conditions are at high risk of experiencing chronic physical conditions.


  • People with chronic physical conditions are at risk of developing poor mental health.



In 2012 Harvard University it said ” The absence of the negative is not the same thing as the presence of the positive. We found that factors such as optimism, life satisfaction, and happiness are associated with reduced risk of cardiovascular disease regardless of such factors as a person’s age, socioeconomic status, smoking status or body weight,” This means that the changes that happen to the body are also because of what and how healthy is our brain to intercept those changes. If we suffer from obesity which is a physical condition, might push us to stress and depression for increasing weight and not able to look good and fit.



Hence the question of “mental health or physical health” should not be dealt with exclusively. They cannot be separated from one another as having a fit body needs a healthy mind to support it. In case of any further doubt over your choices, you can ask for help from our 24×7 available experts.


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