We all have some hobbies or other. For most of us, they constitute an integral part of our life. But did you know some hobbies can be beneficial for our physical as well as mental wellbeing? Hobbies help us utilize our time productively and develop our unique identities by what we choose to practice during the time when we are not sleeping, working or spending time with the friends and family.
Generally, the idea behind taking up a hobby is the joy and fun it brings to us. But, it is not just about the fun. It is a lot more than that!
Let’s take a look at some hobbies that could help you improve your overall health.
Add the Fun Element to Exercise with ‘Dancing’
It is no surprise that dancing offers many health benefits. For most people, it is an easy and convenient method to exercise. You don’t need many equipment to dance. You just need a tune, your feet, and maybe a friend or two.
Dancing is soft on the body. You can do difficult steps by pushing yourself hard or you can comfortably groove to the music. You don’t have to be an expert to dance as anyone can dance.
You may be shy of shaking a leg on the dance floor but almost everyone enjoys dancing, particularly in the comfort of their homes. There is no set rules of dancing. You must do whatever feels good to you.
Dancing is broadly considered to be a social activity and we all know that being socially activite is important for our physical and mental wellbeing. But, we all will agree on the fact that dancing is fun. It does not cause pain and in fact, gives energy to the body. But, what exactly is the mechanism by which dancing keeps us healthy?
Dancing is a type of cardio workout. And, it is a well-known fact that cardio workouts boost heart health, provide strength to the bones and muscles, and up the stamina.
A study that examined around 9,917 participants found that dancing three times a week improved balance in the elderly.  This comes in the wake of the Center for Diseases Prevention and Control (CDC) reports that say that every year 2.8 million elderly people are treated for fall injuries. 
The cases of deaths due to fall in the older population are also increasing. According to CDC, the death rates due to fall has seen a rise from 43,000 per one lakh adults to 58,000 per one lakh adults. 
So, if an activity as simple as dancing could help avoid such unintentional accidents then why not dance away?
Dancing is also good for the brain. According to a study  published in the New England Journal of Medicine, regular dancing can cut the risk of dementia by up to 76%.
Boost Brain Health with ‘Gardening’
Gardening is not exactly an exercise, but there are a host of health benefits associated with managing your garden.
Simple things like pulling weed, picking up tools and planting are all some types of aerobic exercise. This helps in boosting muscle, flexibility and stamina.
And, remaining out is always great for you. As per a study, covered in PLOS One, activities like cycling and gardening decrease the chances of having deficiency of vitamin D in older people.
It has also been associated with reduction in chances of heart attack and stroke by about 30%
Promote Wound Healing with ‘Writing’
Did you know that sitting with a laptop or pen and paper could be great for your health. Writing is associated with physical and mental health benefits. These include boosting memory, decreasing stress levels and enhancing the quality of sleep.
Some studies also suggested that when cancer patients write about their condition and experiences, it helps them easily accept their illness. This helps the patients improve their ability to deal with the stress and show positive health outcomes.
A New Zealand-based study tried to examine if writing could affect the speed of healing the wounds.  The researchers, who conducted the study told one group of the participants to pen down about their most horrifying life experiences. They were given a time of 20 minutes. The other section was given the same time to write about their daily schedule for the next day.
After 14 days, skin biopsies were obtained from the participants. The researchers took the photographs of the wounds periodically till the time the wound healed. The result depicted that those, who wrote about their experiences, had more percentage of healed wounds than the other group.
Writing is a great form to express the self. When you journal about the trauma you have faced, it brings about cathartic effect. When you write for public audience, you reap social benefits. Blogging can help people develop new bonds and connections with others.
Exploit the Medicinal Benefits of ‘Music’
Music heals the body; both physically and mentally. Music boosts the immunity of the body, decreases the levels of anxiety, depression and stress. In patients are awaiting surgery, it is found that listening to music is more effective in relieving anxiety than having prescription drugs. Listening to soothing music reduces the amount of cortisol – the stress hormone.
A study compared the response of brain to music with reactions to sex and food and indicated that all three are associated with pleasurable feelings due to the release of neurotransmitter, dopamine.
Let the Heart Beat Healthily with ‘Pets’
Pets help us to be healthy and they can be our perfect companions. As per CDC, having a pet gives you opportunities to exercise, engage in outdoor activities and socialize.  Additionally, it helps reduce elevated blood pressure, triglyceride and cholesterol levels.
All these factors help cut the chances of having a heart attack. A study showed that owning a pet, particularly a dog, is related to decreased risk of heart disease. The study author, Glenn N. Levine said that it could be that healthier people have pets and not that having a pet reduces the chances of cardiovascular conditions.
If you have a hobby, think about the ways how it might help you improve your health. If you are planning to take up a new hobby, then you can bank on this article to get tips on how to remain healthy while enjoying your favorite activities.
like dancing, gardening, writing, listening to music and having pets boost your health.