Had a bad day? Are you self-aware enough to know that your temper, your attitude, and your general outlook can actually affect your health – good or bad? Over the last few years, it has become increasingly obvious there is a relationship between your emotional well-being and your physical health and vice versa, meaning the state of your physical health can directly impact mental and emotional health. Here are some of the startling findings that resulted from these research studies that showed the impact your attitude has on your physical health: Blood Pressure: One study involved 616 men who had normal blood pressure, and who were evaluated by researchers for cardiovascular risks as well as their mental and emotional outlooks. They were followed for a period of 4 years and at the end of the study, it was found that those with a ‘pessimistic’ outlook increased their risk of developing high blood pressure at 3 times the rate of those deemed to have an ‘optimistic’ outlook. The study also showed that those men who had an optimistic and positive outlook were more likely to have lower blood pressure. The better the outlook, the lower the blood pressure readings. Heart Disease: One particular study evaluated 309 patients who were set to have coronary artery bypasses. They were given both physical and psychological exams prior to the procedures. After their surgeries they were followed for 6 months. The findings showed that patients who had negative attitudes and outlooks were twice as likely to be re-hospitalised after their bypasses. Coronary Artery Disease: 298 patients who were scheduled for angioplasty procedures were evaluated much like the above heart disease group. At the end of the study, it was shown that the pessimists had 3 times the likelihood of suffering a heart attack or requiring further procedures than the optimists of the group! There is solid research to suggest that your mental and emotional health has a direct and profound impact on your physical health. The same holds true in reverse. If you feel good physically, that generally translates into feeling better emotionally. Feeling run-down, sick, and being in pain can lead to feelings of frustration, anxiety and even depression over time. Keeping yourself looking and feeling good can make a huge difference in your life. Spending the time getting fit, healthy and active can have a profound effect on your outlook on life! Exercise, no matter the amount, boosts endorphins in your body. These are natural feel-good mood enhancers. Regular exercise and a healthy diet can help minimise the risks of heart disease and high blood pressure. People who take care of themselves are more in tune with their bodies and are pro-active in preventing or alleviating stress and anger issues. It’s never too late to start!