How would you rate your overall health – how confident are you about your answers? Keeping a health journal can help you gain a clearer picture of how your lifestyle choices affect how you feel and can give your overall health the boost it needs. In this article, I will show you how to keep a health journal.
Why write a health journal?
If you or a loved one is experiencing unknown allergic reactions, mood swings, constipation, or other health problems, it’s important to keep track of your health with a daily journal. You can decide what’s important in your journal entries, and who knows, it might help uncover hidden health issues and even inadvertently create new healthy habits!
Benefits of keeping a Health Journal
Keeping a health journal has many benefits. Here are seven reasons to start a health journal:
- Discover lifestyle patterns: Tracking daily health information like diet and sleep can help you think about specific causes and effects that you might not have considered before. For example, you may find that you can’t sleep well without a magnesium salt bath before bed, or that your redness subsides after drinking eight glasses of water.
- You can spot foods that can make things worse: When you keep a food diary, you’re more likely to find foods that cause allergy symptoms, bowel problems, skin problems, or other health problems.
When a reaction occurs, you can go back through your history, and look at the common factors. Check your diary to see if you’ve eaten gluten, dairy, sugar, nuts, eggs, shellfish, or other common triggers.
- You know what to change: There’s a reason why bodybuilders and fitness professionals keep detailed records of their diets and workouts. It all boils down to the fact that you can’t change or improve what you don’t measure, and you can’t replicate success if you don’t know what works.
With a tracker that takes into account your current information about food, exercise, and health, you can reach the real goals that are best for you and your family, so you can stick to the right habits and eliminate the bad ones.
- It will keep you out of monotony: keeping a health journal will help you realize that food or lifestyle factors that are derailing your health plan. Maybe a handful of chocolate chips can lead to overeating, or lack of sleep can lead to poor food choices the next day.
If you know this in advance, you can prioritize certain lifestyle choices to stay on track. Bonus: Not only does it save your time, but it can also help you reach your weight loss goals!
- You still have a sense of responsibility: Even if you write down something important every day, writing something down will give you a strong reason to stick to it. If you really want to be accountable, keep a journal in a public place so others can encourage and support you.
- You’ll see how lifestyle and dietary factors overlap: Diet plays an important role in your sleep quality, sleep habits, and gut. Likewise, lifestyle factors such as stress, hormones, and exercise can significantly affect the amount and type of food your body craves.
Tracking your diet and lifestyle choices will help you understand which changes are most important to you and help you become the healthiest you’ve ever been.
- This can help inform doctors: Don’t feel like you have to analyse all this information yourself. Bring your health log to your doctor so it can help determine the cause of medical problems such as allergies, mental health problems, certain heart conditions, high blood pressure, chronic diseases, and more.
It will also help you objectively understand how certain changes affect your health over time.
What you should write in your Journal
The more information you write in your health diary, the better. If that sounds too difficult, start with some basic aspects of your health, then scroll down to see the details of what you think might help you discover more as you progress. You can write all kinds of things in your journal. In my experience, the following things have been most helpful:
- Food. Identify all the foods you eat every day and make a simple list of them. If you need specific information, you can add the amount of food, the time of eating, and even sort by type of food (e.g. meat, vegetables, etc.). It can help you spot advanced patterns at a glance, like whether you’re getting enough protein.
- Vitamins and supplements. Keep track of the supplements you take and come back to record the number of days you’ve forgotten to take your regular vitamin. In fact, the days you forget to take your medication can give you insights you don’t have!
- Water consumption. We all know that hydration is very important for your body at the cellular level. Track how many ounces of water you drink each day to see how water affects your health. You can use a smartphone app like Daily Water Tracker, Hydro Coach etc for this.
- Sleep quality and duration. You can keep it simple by logging when you go to bed and when you wake up in the morning, but did you know you can also log your sleep quality? Some apps, like Sleep Cycle, can help you understand how well you slept, whether you snore, and what happened when you passed out in the last eight hours.
- Exercise. You don’t have to go to the gym to record your workout – it won’t hurt either. Consider the strenuous activities you do every day, from a brisk walk to vigorously cleaning the bathroom. All those hours of exercise add up faster than you might think!
- Diseases, allergies, skin changes or reactions. Now that you’ve documented everything you’ve done, it’s time to see what’s going on out there. The most important thing is to assess how you feel at the end of the day. Do you suffer from allergies? Do you have irritable bowel syndrome? Is your eczema milder than usual?
If you have trouble staying consistent with your health and wellness goals, consider keeping a health journal. By keeping a health journal or a health diary, you’ll be able to stay on top of your overall health and well-being. I hope you have successfully learnt how to keep a health journal from this.
check this out: 10 habits of healthy living for entrepreneurs