February 20, 2019

Friendships Can Improve Your Health

A thousand miles away or right down the block, having genuine friendships is an essential part of a healthy balanced lifestyle. At Integrative Nutrition, relationships is one area of primary food – the things that feed our soul outside the foods we eat. When our primary food is fulfilled, we are able to live healthier, happier lives.

Friendships are a powerful thing, and as adults, we tend to get busy and put our friendships on the back burner. But having friends who we can cry with, laugh with, listen to, and share our life with can change our overall health. Friends should be there to help us reach our goals and stand by us as we make strides toward achieving them.

Having these quality friendships is a form of nourishment that will help us in reaching happiness. Research suggests that having valuable friendships can keep you from loneliness, which can lead to a variety of health issues, like depression, high blood pressure, and increased body mass index. Good friendships help improve your mood, induce less stress, and increase your self-confidence.

While we often form friendships based on where we spend time, like work, school, the gym, and other general hangouts, we’re now living in a digital age, where technology, social media, and online interaction are creating friendships and communities more than ever before. People frequently share a majority of their lives on Instagram and Facebook and wind up connecting with like-minded individuals who share similar interests. A variety of companies, apps, and organizations have been developed with the intention of allowing people to make friends and interact with others who have common hobbies. For example, Integrative Nutrition graduates Sarah Casden, cofounder of HelloWellness, and Jessica Baumgardner, cofounder of The GOOD Fest, started companies that host events to bring relationships around wellness that were formed online to real life through festivals, speaking engagements, fitness classes, and more.

Not only is having a community of people you can share your life with an important part of staying happy, but there can be major impacts on your physical and mental health without friendships that nourish you. Good friendships are dependent on someone who supports you and listens to you and vice versa.

But it’s not always easy as an adult to find people who share your interests. It might feel uncomfortable at first to put yourself out there, but the outcome can truly benefit your overall life! Here are a few waysto get started meeting new friends.

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Go out of the house to exercise.
Ever since at-home workouts began trending over the last few years and the list of workouts that can be streamed right to your living room continues to grow, going to a studio or gym to get a workout in might not be on your agenda. Find a run club or a group fitness class that works for you and makes it simple to talk to others who are there for the same reason.

Pick up a new hobby.
Go to an art class, learn to play the guitar, or take up dancing. These are all fun ways to get yourself out there and find things in common with others.

Pursue a passion.
Integrative Nutrition students and graduates often bond over their shared passion for health and wellness. We’ve seen an abundance of Health Coaches form some of their best friendships with peers because of a passion to help others find health and happiness. We see our alumni create business partnerships and find accountability buddies and best friends based on following dreams and chasing goals.

Attend events.
Speaking engagements, networking events, conferences, and yoga workshops are just a few ways you can find others who share your interests. You can find different events on social media, in local newspapers, and on event sites.

How do you meet new friends? Let us know in the comments below!

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