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Get Prepared: May is Mental Health Awareness Month!

Each year millions of Americans face the reality of living with a mental illness. May is Mental Health Awareness Month and every year the goal is to fight stigma, provide support, educate the public, and advocate for policies that support people with mental illness and their families.

Mental Health Awareness Month was started in the United States in 1949 by the Mental Health America organization (then known as the National Association for Mental Health). Its purpose is to raise awareness and educate the public about mental illnesses, such as the 18.1% of Americans who suffer from depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorder; the realities of living with these conditions; and strategies for attaining mental health and wellness. It also aims to draw attention to suicide, which can be precipitated by some mental illnesses.

Encourage individuals around the country to focus on the following healthy aspects of their daily lives in order to promote mental wellness:

  • Maintain uninterrupted sleep for 8 hours each night.
  • Avoid sugars, greasy foods, salts, processed foods, and saturated fats.
  • Consume more whole grains, greens, unprocessed foods, lean meats, and unsaturated fats.
  • Eat 2-3 well-balanced meals per day.
  • Drink at least 3 liters of water per day.
  • Consume natural probiotics such as yogurt, miso, sauerkraut, kefir, and kimchi.
  • Engage in a physical activity for at least 30 minutes a day.
  • Stay away from toxic thoughts, toxic people, and toxic conversations.
  • Engage in positive thoughts and conversations.
  • Practice mindfulness or meditation on a daily basis.
  • Learn how to manage your stress.
  • Stay present in your daily relationships.
  • Avoid “screen time” and engage in more “in person time”.
  • Visit your doctor for preventative health and cancer screenings.
  • Take time for yourself every day.

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