Few, if any people will have complete physical, mental and social wellbeing all the time. Trevor Smith, a senior member of the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity, will join us every week to talk about health and wellbeing

Last week, we looked at aspects of physical and mental health and how they impact on our immune system. Interesting isn’t it? Well there’s more…

I would like to conclude this by looking at our emotional and social wellness.

Our emotional wellness is our ability to be aware, understand and be able to control our emotions. It is where you feel in control of situations, happy and you are not anxious or stressed. It is our ability to respond to challenges, make positive changes and to be resilient. It relates to our overall approach of life, happiness, relaxation, and satisfaction.

Research shows that too much stress or anxiety weakens the immune system, however, positive emotions can enhance it.

Emotional wellness is knowing what makes you angry, stressed or anxious and you can manage this in a way to make yourself smile again. You may be surprised to find just how much of an impact one of the simple tasks below can boost your emotional wellness:

  • Yoga or some similar breathing exercises;
  • Muscle relaxation exercises;
  • Keep a mood chart/emotion diary;
  • Take a relaxing bath with no distractions;
  • Talk to friends and family about how you are feeling.

This last point brings me to social wellness. This is our ability to interact with others and build strong, long lasting relationships. Research has shown that people with a strong social network live longer. They have a stronger cardiovascular (heart) function and lower blood pressure.

The Northern Echo:

Some simple ways to boost our social wellness are:

  • Play games with family and friends;
  • Participate in team challenges;
  • Engage with social media (in moderation);
  • Be kind to one another (it’s true, being kind is good for our health).

If you are able to make minor changes in your lifestyle across all these areas (physical activity, mental wellness, emotional wellness and social wellness) and be aware of how they are impacting your mood and general health, then surely you are on to a winner.


Last week, I briefly mentioned that Public Health England launched the Better Health campaign. Since then I have had a week to download the app and become familiar with it. This is a major new adult health campaign and its aim is to encourage people to kickstart positive health choices.

Gaining weight is often a gradual process that takes place over a number of years and modern life does not always make it easy. But this extra weight causes pressure to build up around vital organs, making it harder for the body to fight against diseases like cancer, heart disease and now Covid-19. By reducing your weight within a healthy range, you can cut your risk of being critically ill.

The Northern Echo:

A new national campaign is under way to encourage millions of adults to kick start their health and reduce their risk of serious illness, including Covid-19

Government guidelines suggest that to improve health and wellbeing, individuals should aim to have a BMI below 25 and above 18.5.

To support people to live healthier lives, the Better Health campaign provides a variety of tools and apps to help you make healthier food choices, become more active and prevent future weight gain. One of these tools is a Weight Loss Plan app, which provides 12 weeks’ worth of engaging content that can be personalised and tailored to the goals and needs of the individual.

I thought this app was very useful. It has some good hints and tips for exercise and how to count calories. It also helps you keep track daily of the number of calories you take in and how many you burn off. In addition to the app there is another (recommended through the weight loss app) called Easy Meals. This has a range of healthy recipe ideas for breakfast, lunch and dinner,with the calorie count and nutritional information provided.

If you would like more help and support to lose weight, visit: nhs.uk/BetterHealth


Having had a go myself, I am now an advocate of the Better Health Campaign, specifically the apps which are easy to use and are very informative. Therefore, I challenge you to download the NHS Weight Loss plan app and the One You Easy Meals app. Take a look, familiarise yourself with it and get started. If you have been thinking about making a real change to your health and diet then take this weekend to prepare, commit and set yourself the goal to start on Monday. There is no time like the present, download it now, go on, I dare you. Let’s do this. Please share your comments on Twitter @TheNorthernEcho and @TSmith_PE

Trevor Smiths works at Premier Education. He is a senior member of the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity