The words health and body shape generally evoke two things: health and beauty. Health refers to an inner state while beauty refers to the external aspect of a person’s life. Health is an overall state of being healthy and incorporates a person’s physical attributes, mental attributes and social outlook. Beauty on the other hand refers to how one perceive themselves and their bodies. This article will explore some of the interrelated concepts of health and beauty.
Health, as defined by the World Health Organization, “is a state of full physical, mental and emotional well-being and not simply the absence of sickness and disease.” Various definitions have been used over the years for various purposes. By using a variety of perspectives, one can arrive at a more accurate definition that will serve as a starting point for managing the disease and improving the quality of life on a daily basis. The following definition of health and bodily features will serve as a basis for the development of an effective health and body course curriculum for students in the Master of Public Health degree program.
Health encompasses a persons entire physical environment, which includes the frequency and magnitude of their experiences, behaviors, environments, genetics, and environmental factors. Illness, or any other physical condition, arises when one’s body chemistry or immune response is abnormal for the normal processes of health. The definition also includes the combination of any acquired or congenital abnormality that impairs the normal function of the body. Examples of such abnormalities include chronic conditions, birth defects, neurological disorders, and autoimmune diseases.
Good health is determined by a combination of good physical traits, good mental traits, and good social well-being. Physical traits include height, weight, muscle strength, and bone density; mental traits include intelligence, ability to learn, logical reasoning, persistence, and resilience; and social well-being traits include acceptance of self and interpersonal relationships, social interaction, and ability to socialize. In order to achieve good health, all three traits must be at their very best. These traits are also positively influenced by one’s lifestyle and attitude. These three elements interact to determine one’s quality of life.
The mental health definition considers both the physical and mental health of a person. The definition defines mental illness as a disease or condition resulting from biological, psychological, or environmental factors that impair the person’s ability to function normally within their environment and interpersonal relationships. Mental illnesses can affect people of any age, race, gender, or ethnic background. The most common type of mental disorder is bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression. Other mental illnesses include schizophrenia, postpartum depression, autism spectrum disorders, seasonal affective disorder, borderline personality disorder, and eating disorders.
Overall, health conditions are caused by a combination of genetics, psychology, lifestyle, and environmental factors. Some health conditions are the result of past trauma or abuse, while others are the result of current stressors. People who experience poverty, abuse, and violence in their lives are more likely to develop long-term conditions such as poor physical health, substance abuse, and depression. Conditions that affect the physical body may develop as a result of unhealthy lifestyles, such as smoking, obesity, lack of exercise, and lack of vitamin D. Mental health conditions can develop as a result of environmental factors such as poverty, substance abuse, and low social status.