Health – What Is It?

Health, as defined by the World Health Organization, is “the state of total physical, mental and emotional well-being and not just the absence of illness and infirmity”. Over time a variety of other definitions have also been used for medical purposes. In current practice, health is more frequently associated with wellness or quality of life. The definition of health is actually more important than the use of the term.


Health and well-being are concepts that are interdependent. Health and well-being cannot be effectively promoted unless the other is achieved as well. A healthy physical health, for example, cannot be realized without a healthy mental health; likewise, a healthy mental health cannot be realized unless a healthy physical health is achieved.

Both psychological and physical aspects of life need to be managed in concert in order to promote optimal health. Mental health refers to your ability to live your life comfortably and to deal with challenges. It also includes your capacity to make good decisions, to understand the meaning of your life, and to trust and respect you as a person. On the other hand, physical health pertains to your ability to maintain a normal body system, to preserve adequate body fluids, to regulate internal body temperature, and to protect yourself from infectious agents. These aspects are also crucial to good health.

Health and well being are interrelated but they are actually distinct concepts. While one relates to health through a physical examination of the body, another focuses on the mental processes involved in managing the body and achieving a healthy balance of chemicals and processes. The resulting definition of health is a whole that takes into account both the physical and the mental aspects of your life. The definition of health therefore is a subjective view of the ways you live. This subjective view of health is what has been called a “complete physical” by the medical community.

A complete physical well being therefore requires that all the systems of the body are functioning at their peak efficiency. Good health refers to a state in which the basic functions of the body are functioning at their optimum level. In other words, it implies health in the absence of diseases and in the absence of physical impairment. Complete health therefore is equivalent to optimum health. The two concepts are interdependent: good health refers to optimum health and bad health results from inadequate maintenance of good health or from any sort of disease.

You can achieve good health by practicing a healthy lifestyle and getting a good amount of physical exercise. You can also adopt a defined health approach that concentrates on the mental, emotional, and spiritual well being of an individual. If you want to manage your mental health, then a defined health approach may help you a lot. Your approach to life could be determined by your attitude towards life. Good health therefore refers to a balanced mental and physical well-being.