Health versus fitness

22 January 2021

Why is this important?⁠

There is a common misconception that simply being “physically fit” equates to being healthy. But even the fittest athletes are not immune to cardiovascular disease for example.⁠

Physical health includes ⁠

  • fitness⁠
  • efficient recovery from ailments and injury⁠
  • absence of substance abuse, rest and recovery (including after exercise and as stress management)⁠
  • quality sleep⁠
  • good nutrition⁠

⁠When we understand the difference between health and fitness, we can see that fitness is only one aspect of physical health, and physical health is only one aspect of overall health.⁠

Nutrition & physical health

⁠Many people think that nutrition is only important for the way we look, such as our weight and our muscle tone. But it is important to understand that nutrition is vital for our physical health because of how nutrients are used for all our bodily functions.⁠

For example, calcium and potassium enable cells to communicate with each other, and water enables cells to reproduce. Fat is required for building cell walls, for brain tissue and for transporting fat-soluble vitamins. Protein is used to build our tissues, including our muscles, skin, organs, connective tissues and bones. Protein is also used to make enzymes, neurotransmitters and hormones.⁠

Good nutrition also requires a healthy digestion, allowing optimal extraction and absorption of nutrients and efficient excretion of waste.

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About Tira

About Tira

Tira Cole is a nutritionist, researcher and educator. Her passion is meat-based nutrition and support of farming.

Learn more about Tira.

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