With the popularity of the wellness industry, we are likely to encounter many programs, apps and supplements promising to improve our mental wellbeing. Unfortunately, many of these products are not only costly, but also have very little (if any) evidence to support their claims. Research continues to point towards a handful of basic lifestyle factors that help build strong physical and mental health. We like to call these The Big 5 for Mental Health.
‘The Big 5’ include Restorative Sleep, Physical Activity, Healthy Eating, Social Connection and Helping Out. Reducing intake of substances, such as alcohol or drugs, is also vital for getting and staying mentally healthy. If we want to get technical, we should really call it The Big 5 (+1) for Mental Health!
Improving in one area often has carry over benefits in other areas too (e.g., after a good night’s sleep we may feel more able to be active, which will then improve our sleep and possibly even our healthy eating). We invite you to explore these evidence-based lifestyle strategies to support your mental health.*
*Social factors of health (e.g., income instability, food insecurity, insufficient social support networks, etc.) may influence how The Big 5 for Mental Health can be applied for each person (aka – everyone’s Big 5 for Mental Health may look a little different). It is important to consider the many factors which may impact The Big 5.