Healthy Living Blog

The seven health risks of becoming a hermit


More than fifteen years ago futurist Faith Popcorn predicted that by now society would be ‘cocooning’, living in apartments, having our shopping delivered. That exact situation has now been propelled by COVID. The trouble is that in New Zealand where we are fairly well insulated from its ravages, there are a mass of people who, although we’re now in level one, have remained in semi-lockdown and ‘cocooned’, almost as if they have formed a new habit to become hermits.

But there are health risks in remaining ‘cocooned’. (1) You risk becoming lonely and perceive stress more strongly than social people. (2) Loneliness causes disturbances in your natural sleep cycle (3) Loneliness and depression can come hand in hand (4) A lonely body doesn’t have it’s defenses up – you tend to have a suppressed immune system (5) Loneliness has an effect on your ability to socially interact (6) Loners experience negativity more severely (7) Loneliness decreases your life span; surpasses your immune system, stresses your heart, your circulatory system, your respiratory system, your digestive system, your mental health and can also affect the way others see you.

It could be time to be enthusiastically brave and to throw yourself back into the healthy habit of coming to the gym. The reason is much deeper than ‘to remove excess weight’ stems to the very essence of life itself. To be among others, and to share the experience of positive movement and a common cause, unity, togetherness, laughter, friendship, and yes, the peak of good health!

Is it time to leave your cocoon?


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