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Living Healthy

Healthy Body, Healthy Mind

May 20, 2024

If you want to get or stay healthy and active, it’s important to treat your body and mind with care. This is the essence of self-care. Rather than being indulgent, practicing self-care for a healthy body and mind is about taking small steps every day to improve your well-being, like making an appointment for a yearly checkup or going to bed earlier.

When it comes to starting a daily self-care routine, the main goal is to be realistic. The best self-care practices can often take more effort than we realize. Yet once you establish a routine, you’ll feel better physically and mentally every day — and stay healthier over the long term.

3 Ways To Care For Your Body And Mind


Nurture Your Body

Your body works hard every moment of every day, pumping blood, repairing cells, and helping you avoid danger. Most days, you don’t even notice until something aches or breaks. That’s why it’s important to take care of your physical health.
Self-care ideas to support your physical health include:
  • Regular checkups: Even if you feel healthy, an annual physical gives your doctor the chance to catch health problems early, before they become more serious. They can also help you stay on track with good habits that will keep you feeling your best. 
  • Physical activity: Exercise is one of those self-care items that’s easy to put off — yet it’s vital to strong physical and mental health. It can boost your mood, kickstart your immune system, aid digestion, and help you sleep.
  • Healthy eating: When it comes to taking care of yourself, what you eat and drink play a critical role. Food is your fuel — and your medicine. It affects how you feel, how well your body moves, and how well your brain works. Drinking enough water every day is also vital for health. 
  • Good sleep: Sleep restores your body and brain. Strive for around seven to nine hours of quality sleep. To help, try turning off electronic devices an hour before bed and going to sleep at the same time each night. A few minutes of deep breathing or meditation can help you relax.

Make Time For Mental Health


Commitments and responsibilities in your daily life might make you feel overwhelmed or stressed at times. If stress becomes chronic, it isn’t good for your long-term physical and mental health.

Self-care tips for mental health include:

  • Talking to a mental health professional: If you’re not sure how to start counseling or where to find a therapist, your health plan can help connect you with mental health support.
  • Getting outside: Being around nature can improve focus, lower stress, and boost your mood. If you’re feeling angry or stressed, step outside for a few minutes. Enjoy the breeze and sunshine. Even small things like having a houseplant bring a touch of nature indoors. 
  • Practicing gratitude: Take a few minutes every day to be thankful for what you have by praying, meditating, or writing in a journal. Also, remember to tell those who matter most to you how much you appreciate them.

Connect With Others

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, connecting with others has a positive impact on our minds, bodies, and overall health. So going to dinner with friends is good for you! 
Here are three self-care techniques for social connections:
  1. Practice being more social: People who regularly engage with others, and even with pets, recover faster from illness and are sick less often. Say “hi” to your neighbor and “yes” to a night out. If you are feeling down, reach out to a trusted friend. A good laugh or heart-to-heart talk is healing for both mind and body.
  2. Get involved: Volunteering is good for your mental health and your community. Find something that meets your interests and fits your schedule, whether it’s once a week or once a month.
  3. Take a break from social media: Social media might seem like a good way to connect with others, but it also can take a toll on your quality of life, self-esteem, sleep, and mood. Take a break from your phone, starting with not checking your phone during meals, before bedtime, or right when you wake up. 

Your health plan offers many ways to support your physical and mental health. If you have an Anthem health plan, check your benefits or find care on the SydneySM Health app or at You can also call the Member Services number on your health plan ID card to learn more.

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