Managing your health as a student must be a top priority for everyone who is into any academic program.
A student is one who engages in any form of formal learning in a well coordinated environment with processes of admission (in-take), periodic examination (evaluation) after been taught in order to determine his level of understanding.
To be more specific in this article, we will center on students in higher institutions of learning. Health over time as attracted different definition from different people.
People define health as it pertains to them. To some, once they are able to eat 3 square meal means their healthy, while others define being healthy base on the fact that they are able to do their daily routine work.
Health is however viewed traditionally as absence of disease. Health can as well be define as the ability to efficiently go about our daily activities with all the body organs functioning at their highest performance level without any deviation from what is known to be the normal.
Health can be classified into many aspects but 5 of the aspects shall be discussed which are social, emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual health.
All these five aspects of health as their role to play in ones’ level of health and if any of it is affected, it destabilize others.
The spiritual aspect which is mostly neglected by most people including students has to do with our creator. The life of everything is in the source of such. The Supreme Being has created human and installed in them everything that will enhance learning.
No super computer can come near the nerves in human brain, both in quality and function. With the way this Supreme Being (God) structure human brain, there is no limit to what we can do.
In managing your health as students, it is expedient that students take cognizance of their spiritual health by nurturing it in the way the creator has designed it. Scripture categorically stated that “every good and every perfect gift is from above” and He (God) that is above is above everything.
The mental dimension is very important because of its core role in academic related activities. The mental aspect of health also helps in the area of cognition, retention, reasoning and so on.
Mental health is your ability to remain open to innovations, experiences, and ideas that can practically be applied to one’s choice of decision, aid peer group interaction, betters and advance the community.
The physical aspect dwell much on the physical appearance and fitness. It deals with structural make-up. It is like the frame work that houses the other aspects of health.
The physical appearance of an individual speaks volume about such person and it is very easy for people to weigh how healthy one is, though this can be proven to be wrong judging with the body type i.e. that someone is an ectomorph (slender / slim) does not mean such is not healthy, like wise that one appear muscular (mesomorphic) does not implies an higher level of health and also that, one looks fatty (endomorph) might not be a sign of disease.
Although all the three body types as to do with one’s health and this can positively or negatively affect such an individual.
The social dimension of health as to do with interpersonal relationship. Efficiency demands concentration and as student, you cannot study in isolation.
Therefore the social aspect of health which deals with how we interact with our friends, family members, mates, colleagues, and other individuals that comes our way must be properly handled.
Social dimension of wellness has to do with the ability to connect and relate with other individuals that comes your way.
It is your ability to commence and maintain relationships that are positive with friends, mate, and family and so on. This to a large extent go a long way to improving your social wellness.
As students, we have individual differences and as such, you must be able to socialize with other students in a manner that your health will not be hampered.
The emotional dimension of health centers on how an individual handles situations and other things that happens to them. Emotion can be positive and can also negative.
The two has the power to affect an individual’s whole health depending on how such emotion is been managed. As a student, you must know how to manage your emotional aspect of your health, in a manner that it will not hinder the learning process.
The whole process of teaching and learning is stressful and that is the fact. The rigors of running from one lecture theatre hall to another, coupled with the unfriendly weather without any air conditioner to cool the effect, most especially in most developing nations.
Various assignments, different registration to be completed and sign. The thoughts of what to eat when one get back to hostel or lodge or hall of residence as the case may be. All these affect students’ health if not properly handled.
There is a saying that nothing good comes easy and learning is a good thing. It takes one with good health to operate at the highest level of functionality.
Stress is definitely inevitable in learning process, meaning that, students must learn how to manage their health for them to achieve their aim of learning.
Here are some of the ways of managing your health as student while learning:
1. Adequate nutrition
2. Quality sleep
3. Regular Exercise
Nutrition is one of the measures you must put in place in maintaining your health as a student.
Thinking that the word nutrition means pretty much same as food is partially right. But the word has a broader meaning that will gradually become clear as you make your way in the course of reading this article.
Specifically, nutrition is the science that studies food and how food nourishes our bodies and impacts your wellbeing.
It involves how we store, metabolize, consume, and digest nutrients. It as well deals with how these nutrients affect our body function.
One of the things that constitute healthy lifestyle is adequate nutrition. Nutritious diets have a way of preventing humans from diseases and reduce the risk of other opportunistic diseases.
Proper nutrition help to improve the health of students, prevent diseases, achieve and maintain a desirable weight, and maintain energy and vitality.
You are what you eat and the fact remains that most foods you ingest are broken down and reassembled into your bones, brain cell, muscles- all of your tissues and organs.
Adequate diets and consumption of nutritious foods is very important in managing ones health as a student. The school environment gives room for students to feed majorly on junks, concentrated fats and carbonated drinks and in real sense, junks are not useful to the body.
Consuming junks is as a result of the strenuous process. Some students have to leave their hostels as early as possible to attend lectures. In most cases, they do not take breakfast.
From the word break-fast, one can notice the importance of the meal. It actually a break from the long fast one experienced from the preceding night. Most students end up eating snacks and other fries as the first meal.
Such junks only keep the system going, it lacks the necessary nutritional value that can help build the body immune system which will in turn serves as antibodies that fight back diseases and illness that might want to gain entrance into the body.
As a nutritionist, we advise students to consume foods that contain all the 6 classes of nutrients- carbohydrate, proteins, lipid (fats), vitamins, minerals, and water.
These should be taken in right proportion; this is because the nutrients are very critical to human growth and function. The whole nutrients are reassembled and channeled to the parts of the body and this enhances the five dimension health.
Ensure you do not go to the bed with empty stomach.
Sleep is one of the things you can do as student to keep your body healthy. But in most cases, students find it hard to get enough sleep due to the stress they might have pass through during the day and the loads of work they have such as assignment, presentation etc will still keep them awake in the night.
Most of them end up skipping sleep which is not in any way good for their health. Since there is no one with 100% optimal health, getting quality and sufficient sleep is one of the most important things you can do as student to improve your health.
The importance of sleep in an individual’s life is not in any way small, even God the creator rest after a long work. Sleep allow your body to rest after a long day, it as well balance hormonal functions and also help to control stress.
Quality sleep is one of the major methods of improving your memory as student. Quality sleep as well assists in better consideration and focus.
Quality sleep also enhances longevity in life and it helps in maintaining healthy weight.
Here are few ways to enjoy quality sleep:
1. Avoidance of electronic gadgets:
as a student, ensure you do away with electronic devices such as mobile phone, games, T.V, P.C before you go to bed. This will help you reduce the alertness level and makes sleeping easy.
2. Conducive environment: – ensure you sleep in a dark and cool environment. This helps to initiate sleep quickly.
3. Have a sleep routine: as a student, ensure you set routine for sleep.
4. Never go to bed without eating and ensure you do not over feed.
Exercise has been known to be a most important stimulus to the circulation of the blood and lymph. Exercising regularly aid circulation, it aid digestion, it improves mental health and other aspects of health, it strengthens the heart, and exercise facilitate sleep and relaxation.
It relieves internal congestion, it strengthens the lungs, it reduces the danger of coronary heart diseases, it helps to clear the skin
Exercise improves the heat regulating mechanism, and regular exercise provides the body with valuable neuromuscular coordination.
There is abundance of benefit available for students who take part in regular exercise, ranging from the first fact of general improvement in health and an increased ability of the body to resist fatigue and carry on sustained effort.
Students’ participation in sports and exercise do more than develop physical power. They promote physical alertness, rapid thinking, quick decision making, increase sportsmanship spirit and social adjustment.
Exercise has been proven to be one of the means to improve weight lose. When you lose weight, it reduces your chances of developing chronic diseases such as diabetes, heart problems, high blood pressure and hosts of others.
Exercising yourself help improves the health of your brain. It helps in the growth and stimulation of brand new brain cells at the hippocampus. Regular exercise enhances sleep, mood and it as well reduces anxiety and stress.
Summary: By eating foods that are nutritious (foods containing the 6 classes of food, adequately taken in the right proportion), having quality sleep and engaging yourself in regular exercise, you are maintaining your health as student and you stand a chance to be successful in the pursuit.