The Connection between Self-Love and Physical Health

Apr 26, 2023 2:00:00 PM

Written By:
DaVinci Healthcare Expert


self love physical health

Self-love and self-esteem are powerful tools for improving overall well-being and quality of life. While many of us focus on physical health through diet and exercise, it's important not to overlook the impact our mental and emotional health can have on our physical health.

Research has shown that learning to love yourself and cultivating a positive self-image can have a significant impact on physical health outcomes. In this blog, we'll explore how self-love and self-esteem can help to improve our physical health and provide practical tips for cultivating a positive self-image and overall well-being. Whether you're looking to boost your energy levels, reduce stress, or decrease the risk of future health problems, self-love and self-esteem are key components of a healthy lifestyle.

The Connection between Self-Love and Physical Health

There is a growing body of research that suggests a strong link between self-esteem, self-love, and physical health. What does it mean to love yourself? Many experts start by discussing self-esteem, or self-love—in short, how we feel about ourselves and how we express those feelings.

Low self-esteem is associated with a variety of negative health outcomes, including occasional feelings of sadness, anxiousness, and stress. These mental health issues, in turn, can have a negative impact on physical health. For example, stress can lead to a weakened immune system and an increased risk of health concerns.[1]

Additionally, people with low self-esteem may engage in unhealthy behaviors such as substance abuse or a sedentary lifestyle, which can further increase their risk of developing health problems.

On the other hand, having high self-esteem has been linked to better physical health outcomes. People with high self-esteem tend to engage in healthier behaviors such as regular exercise, a balanced diet, and better stress management. They may also have stronger social support networks, which can provide additional physical and emotional benefits.

There is a strong connection between self-esteem and physical health. By taking steps to love ourselves and improve our self-esteem, our chances of leading a happier and healthier life increase.

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Common Physical Concerns Connected to Lack of Self-Love

Certain physical concerns may suggest a lack of self-love or self-esteem. Some of these include:

  1. High stress: People with low self-esteem may also tend toward higher levels of stress, which can lead to an increased risk of health problems, from cardiac issues to digestive upset.
  2. Poor sleep: Low self-esteem has been linked to poor sleep quality. Lack of sleep can lead to a host of physical and mental health issues, including more visceral fat, blood sugar issues, and occasional anxious thinking.
  3. Substance abuse: People with low self-esteem and self-love may turn to drugs or alcohol as a way to cope. Substance abuse can have serious physical and mental health consequences, including liver damage, and increased risk of accidents and injuries.
  4. Unhealthy eating habits: Low self-love can also lead to unhealthy eating habits, such as overeating, binge eating, or restrictive dieting.
  5. Inactivity: People with low self-esteem may be less likely to engage in physical activity.

Any integrative health provider will likely agree that there is a strong connection between self-love, self-esteem, and physical health. By working to improve our self-esteem and cultivating self-love, we may be able to reduce our risk of developing these physical health concerns.

10 Ways to Foster Self-Love and Improve Physical Health

How do we learn to love ourselves? The answer is not universal, but there are several  ways to foster self-love in your daily life and see positive changes to your physical wellbeing:

  1. Practice mindfulness: Mindfulness is a great way to connect with yourself and cultivate self-love. Take some time each day to focus on the present moment and connect with your body and thoughts.
  2. Exercise regularly: Exercise is a great way to improve physical health, reduce everyday stress, and increase self-love. Find a type of exercise that you enjoy and make it a regular part of your routine.
  3. Eat a balanced diet: Eating a balanced diet that includes whole foods, fruits, and vegetables can improve physical health and help you feel better about yourself.
  4. Get enough sleep: Getting enough sleep is essential for physical health and can help you feel better about yourself. Try to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep each night.
  5. Practice positive self-talk: The way you talk to yourself can have a big impact on your self-love and physical health. Practice positive self-talk and replace negative thoughts with positive ones.
  6. Spend time with supportive people: Surrounding yourself with supportive people can help you feel better about yourself and improve your physical health.
  7. Engage in activities you enjoy: Whether it be physical activity or other hobbies, prioritize activities that make you feel happy and fulfilled. If nothing comes to mind, try something new on your own, or look around to see what is offered in your community.
  8. Don’t neglect oral health: Research shows that dental health is a window into your overall health.  Dental health is a key indicator of overall health, and the health of the mouth and teeth can have a significant impact on the health of the entire body. Focus on a diet rich in nutrient-dense foods, particularly those containing fat-soluble vitamins and minerals. Don’t underestimate the importance of regular brushing and flossing to prevent the development of dental problems.
  9. Recognize and manage stress: Numerous studies show stress can have a significant impact on physical health, contributing to the development of various discomforts. For example, stress can weaken the immune system and lead to a heightened inflammatory response. Additionally, stress can affect the body's digestive system, respiratory system, skin, and musculoskeletal system, leading to a variety of health problems.[2]
  10. Practice forgiveness: Practicing forgiveness can have a positive impact on both emotional and physical health. Studies have shown that holding onto grudges and resentment can lead to negative emotions, such as anger and anxiousness which can contribute to occasional stress and physical health problems. Forgiveness, on the other hand, can lead to feelings of compassion, empathy, and inner peace, which can reduce stress and improve overall well-being.[3] 

Remember that self-love and physical health are interconnected and require consistent effort—but the benefits to are worth it.



Cultivating a positive self-image and practicing self-care are not always easy, but these steps are essential for promoting overall well-being and happiness. By making self-love a priority in our lives, we can unlock our full potential and achieve our health and fitness goals.

You deserve to love and care for yourself just as much as you care for others, so make self-love a daily habit and watch as your physical health improves along with your mental and emotional well-being.

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[1] Juth V, Smyth JM, Santuzzi AM. How do you feel? Self-esteem predicts affect, stress, social interaction, and…J Health Psychol. 2008 Oct;13(7):884-94. doi: 10.1177/1359105308095062. PMID: 18809639; PMCID: PMC2996275.

[2] Mariotti A. The effects of…stress on health: new insights into the molecular mechanisms of brain-body communication. Future Sci OA. 2015 Nov 1;1(3):FSO23. doi: 10.4155/fso.15.21. PMID: 28031896; PMCID: PMC5137920.

[3] Toussaint LL, Shields GS, Slavich GM. Forgiveness, Stress, and Health: a 5-Week Dynamic Parallel Process Study. Ann Behav Med. 2016 Oct;50(5):727-735. doi: 10.1007/s12160-016-9796-6. PMID: 27068160; PMCID: PMC5055412.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.