Holistic health is about caring for the whole person — providing for your physical, mental, spiritual, and social needs. It’s rooted in the understanding that all these aspects affect your overall health, and being unwell in one aspect affects you in others.
Take stress, for example. It’s a psychological response, but it can also cause physical symptoms, such as headaches, trouble sleeping, weight gain, and muscle pain. Of course, it works both ways, and being physically ill can cause you to feel anxious or depressed. Meanwhile, your spirituality and your relationships can boost your mental and physical health. Studies show that having close friendships lowers your blood pressure, reduces your stress levels, and can even improve your chances of surviving cancer.
Understanding this, doctors who take a holistic approach to health don’t just ask you about your symptoms. They ask about you — your overall health and your life — so they can make personalized recommendations to improve your wellness.