Challenge: What Is Health, Really?

When most people think of health, images of young people with fit bodies doing various “healthy” activities like running or yoga usually pop into their heads. You’ll probably envision them wearing body-hugging spandex in bold colors, smiling, looking relaxed. Not a drop of sweat in sight.

The media would like you to believe that there is only one way to be healthy, and they mean skinny, slender or thin. But this is not true at all. What passes for healthy can vary from one person to another. Health is widely variable and extremely personal. It does not only encompass what you eat and how much you move your body, but it also includes your state of happiness and satisfaction with life.

Notice I said nothing about weight. That number on the scale tells you nothing except how much you weigh, how much mass you consist of and how gravity is acting upon it. Simple physics. Depending on your individual makeup, like how muscular you are, how finely or broadly structured your bones are, how many organs you’ve had removed through the years, or even how efficiently your digestion works, your weight can be vastly different from that in the supposedly “healthy” range dictated by the BMI (Body Mass Index) chart which only takes into account your weigh and your height. True, there is evidence that when your BMI is in the range dubbed as healthy, between about 21 and 25, you are less likely to suffer from lifestyle diseases such as heart disease and diabetes. But there is also plenty of evidence to the contrary.

The question of weight always polarizes the health debate into the camps of the goods, the bads, and the uglies. Yet this is unfair. All bodies are different, and what is healthy for you may not be healthy for me. Health is completely individual.

Your health is simply a result of how well you nourish yourself. This nourishment comes from more than just what you eat, which are considered Secondary Foods. Your Primary Foods are the foods that feed your soul, the ones that help you to be joyful and fulfilled, things such as your relationships, spirituality and career. Your physical activity and water intake can also be counted as Primary Foods.

So what is health, really? It is not about weight. It is about all that you are as an individual. Health is a state where you have reached a balance of your Primary and Secondary Foods, resulting in true happiness and satisfaction.

Health as a balance of Primary and Secondary foods is the basis of my style of coaching. If you’re interested in learning more about coaching with me and breaking through your own blocks to ruthless self love, sign up for a free Breakthrough Session with me today!


About Tiana Dodson, Fat Health Coach

I am proud, fat, and healthy. Yes, they can all go together like that. Read more at View all posts by Tiana Dodson, Fat Health Coach

4 responses to “Challenge: What Is Health, Really?

  • skywalkerstoryteller

    This is a very good definition of health. I have been working in the medical industry, commonly called health care, for about 8 years. And with each passing day I am more and more disillusioned. Even with some of the more progressive approaches. You are so right about the BMI being such a significant factor in health care. Because the contributions of stressful, unfulfilling work, poverty, unhappy relationships, all of those things contribute to sickness. And too often those issues are not addressed.

    • Tiana

      Absolutely, Skywalker! I’m glad you agree. Mathematics cannot account for the human reasons behind something so complex. While just helping someone to eat more green vegetables can be life changing, there are often much deeper issues challenging this simple act. Rooting these out and healing them first bears so much more, and longer lasting, fruit.

  • Taylor

    I strongly agree with you on this. As a personal trainer by profession, I always tell my clients to be focus on living healthy life by eating the right foods. Even if people will undergo different exercises two or three times a week, still it would not benefit them if they won’t care with the foods they eat. The choices of their diet is really important.

    • Tiana

      Absolutely, Taylor. A balance of better eating and more movement is one of the most important keys for a healthier body. But we definitely have to be sure that there is balance in life also. Truly healthy people are happy, too.

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