#BreaktheStigma

See the person in front of you. They smile, laugh and engage with those around them. You think to yourself, ‘They really have their life together and will definitely go far.’

What you may not know is that when at home or alone, they are struggling to go through everyday routines. They could have be sleeping too much or too little, feel numb to things around them or have a sense of hopelessness, having thoughts or memories that they are unable to shake, or may even be thinking of harming themselves. It is very easy for people to smile and put on a mask that hides what they are really going through or struggling with. Just because they don’t show the outward signs, that does not mean there is not a daily struggle.

What is Mental Health?

Mental health includes emotional, psychological, and our social well-being, in other words, how we think, feel, and act. It is also a factor in how we handle stress, manage relationships, and make decisions. Having a positive mental health is important through every life stage, from childhood and through adulthood.

While there are biological factors that contribute to mental health, such as genes or family history, that does not exclude life experiences like trauma or abuse.

The Stigma

Whenever someone hears the words ‘mental illness’ or ‘mental health’, right away a negative view is formed, even if subconciously. Even though people may accept the medical or the genetic explaination of the condition and treatments available, there is still that negatitve feeling attached to those words.

There is still a lack of understanding on what really is mental health or how this negative stigma can affect the person who struggles with the mental illness and their families as well. The persona who suffers from the illness can feel shame for having issues and this can lead to isolation. As unfortunate as it is, they face or have experienced harassment, bullying, violence, and discrimination when looking for employment or housing. The stigma can also prevent them from seeking help due to the shame/humiliation they feel, which only makes it worse.

Not Alone

You are not alone. That is very important to remember. 1 in 4 Americans have a mental illness of some kind. Stay connected with others and get support. You do matter and there is hope.

Very Well Mind – Mental Illness and Stigma

MentalHealth.gov – Let’s Talk About It

Fruits, Veggies, Omegas Oh My!

Going to restate the obvious here. Poor dieting hurts vital organs, affects metabolism, and more often than not, leads to weight gain. It’s something we all know and has been preached to us many times by doctors.

But, what I have never been told is that is affects the largest organ on your body. Skin. A poor diet affects the health of your skin as well as how it ages.

Pucker Up That Fishy Face

I remember when I used to say ‘Here fishy, fishy, fishy. Come and bite on my hook’ as a kid, well now I mean it! The omega-3 fatty acids that are found in fish (e.g. salmon) reduce inflammation and helps moisturize skin. If I had known this in high school, less money would have been spent on retouching my photos to reduce redness and hide acne but I wasn’t much of a fish person back then.

Eat Those Tiny Green Trees

I knew broccoli was one of my favorites for a reason. Besides being a good source of vitamins and minerals that are important for skin health, broccoli holds a compound called sulforaphane. This compound is a powerful agent to protect skin against sun damage in two ways. One, neutralizing harmful free radicals and two, switching on other protective systems in your body.

The Super Food

Avocado has been a major trend in the health world for a while now and there is a reason for that. These large berries (yes, they are berries. Mind blown!) are high in fats that benefit many functions in your body. So what does it do for the skin? The fats provided in the avocado are essential to keep your skin flexible and moisturized. This super berry is also a great source of Vitamin E, which many American do not get enough of. 

In total, including the three above, there are twelve foods that benefit your skin. Unfortunately I could not list them all otherwise, you would be reading a book. SO, for all you lovely readers, I included a link to the article where I found this information.

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/12-foods-for-healthy-skin.

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