How to Spot the Signs Your Physical Health Is Affecting Mental Health

How to Spot the Signs Your Physical Health Is Affecting Mental Health

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Here are 3 ways your mental health is affected by your physical health, and vice versa.

Mental health is incredibly closely linked with our physical health and physical illness. In this video interview, psychologist and expert in health psychology Dr. Ramani Durvasula breaks down 3 ways your mental health is affected by your physical health, and vice versa.

In this discussion, Dr. Ramani and MedCircle host Kyle Kittleson also answer these questions:

What is health psychology and what is the connection between mental health and physical health?
Which health behaviors (like sleep, exercise, and diet) affect mental health issues like depression, stress, anxiety and more?
How do mental health and issues with stress impact chronic pain and migraines?
What does Dr. Ramani do to temper her stress?
How can healthy behaviors transform your physical health?
What’s the most important thing people can do to improve their mental health and physical health?
What are some misconceptions about the relationships between mental health and physical health?

and more.


Mental health conditions hurt someone’s day-to-day functioning. However, more often than not, they can have major consequences on our physical health—and vice versa.

According to clinical psychologist, Dr. Ramani Durvasula, there is no bodily system that is insulated from our psychological health.

There is a relatively new field dedicated to providing real, effective solutions for this deep and undeniable relationship. Health psychology (also known as behavioral psychology) is a discipline in which we look at the reciprocal effects that physical health and mental health have on each other.

It’s an area of psychology that allows us to become much better-informed on some of the most critical issues and health crises of our time. It also provides coping and wellness strategies that go well beyond simple “self-care” tips.

It includes the impact of stress, preventative health, pain management, adherence to medication, and even risky health behaviors like alcohol use, drug use, poor diet, and sedentary lifestyle. This series sheds light on the key physical and behavioral impacts of mental health issues that lead to illness, and on the flip side, the health behaviors that may increase the risk of developing a mental health condition.

Dr. Ramani also walks through how to cope with the stress and other mental health impacts of physical, chronic ailments like diabetes, asthma, migraines, and more.

This understanding is an incredibly important tool as we think about healthcare in the 21st century. By integrating physical and mental healthcare, providers can take care of the whole patient—and not just when they’re sick, but in a way that ensures the enhancement of health and wellness at every stage of life.


  1. TheMentalCorner on August 17, 2022 at 9:50 pm

    Just started a YouTube channel where I focus on my personal experiences with mental health in an attempt to help normalize it and end the stigma that surrounds it!! It would mean the world to me if you guys could check me out! Appreciate y’all!:)

  2. Romina Rezazadeh on August 17, 2022 at 9:52 pm

    My boyfriend recently broke up with me and I’ve been there many times during my 6 years relationship. It’s been a month now and I am struggling with anxiety my migraine comes more often and it disables me I have fast heart beats I sleep more have more nightmares I have lost my appetite and it’s really hard for me to deal with this anxiety symptoms.

  3. Eric Stasiak on August 17, 2022 at 9:53 pm

    Lots of cardio exercise I mean lots of it really stops the looping of trauma. That and finding positive videos to listen to about forward directive thinking on the next best path.
    When there’s no place I mean no place to turn to for help and all I have is YouTube.
    Thanks for the videos

  4. Laura Vasile on August 17, 2022 at 9:55 pm

    Thank you so much for this topic!
    I never went to a psychologist(even if i know i have to), but i’ve seen all kind of disorders in my whole health caused by mental issues; like feeling sick, vomiting when exposed to a challenge or new situation (i guess that’s the anxiety), but its causing me a social disruption and also i cannot gain weight even if i am eating normally.

  5. Jeremiah on August 17, 2022 at 9:59 pm

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  6. YourTube on August 17, 2022 at 9:59 pm

    I always eat clean when I’m depressed. It’s
    my best discipline. I can show you how to!

  7. Shawn Holden on August 17, 2022 at 10:00 pm

    Need make a video about rejection sensitivity disorder

  8. Thando Bokamoso on August 17, 2022 at 10:00 pm

    Your products for beating herpes virus is the best Dr.Ogudugu

  9. Health Shop Plus on August 17, 2022 at 10:02 pm

    excellent thoughts

  10. Summer Fields on August 17, 2022 at 10:03 pm

    It would be great to talk about how people who have physical illnesses suffer, struggle or impacted with mental health. Even those who started out with mental health challenges and developed medical issues that are not related.

  11. Lee Al on August 17, 2022 at 10:04 pm

    How can I know the reason why I had depression? The majority of people that had depression know why it occured to them. I still don’t know why. How is that even possible?

  12. Messianic Hebrew Shawn Kawcak on August 17, 2022 at 10:05 pm

    Weight loss helps me stay more mentally healthy. When you get too big you lose motivation to do things. The better I focus on my spiritual life the better I am during the day. Loneliness makes things hard. In 2011, God healed me of a brain tumor and started my parathyroid working again 8 years and no activity after surgery.

  13. Jaclyn H on August 17, 2022 at 10:05 pm

    Love this video! Can you please do a video on conversational narcissism and how it affects those in relationships? Please for the love of God… Also maybe one on the effects of being dismissed over and over or expressing your needs and repeatedly being let down and the effects of that on a person or relationship… Too many ppl grapple with that including myself. ❤️

  14. Vanny D on August 17, 2022 at 10:06 pm

    Its horrible when you struggle from physical sickness and mental illness because they make each other worst. When you arrive to the point that you don’t know what to do and where to start fix it gets horrible. I struggle with pgad (a rare and unknown genital condition) and then ocd. Some days i am so hungry because i would like to concentrate on a problem and deal with it but then the other problem is there and its just hell because idk with wich doctor i have to talk because these 2 different problems are causing me severe depression episodes in wich i just want to die so bad. Idk what to do.

  15. Micheal Cheng on August 17, 2022 at 10:06 pm

    i have been suffering from herpes for 6 years now, am so happy that i meet DR Rorpopor herbal on you-tube who cured me totally you are the best

  16. Suzette GB on August 17, 2022 at 10:09 pm

    Seeing the title, I was hoping that one of the issues fitting within this area is how living with chronic severe pain affects us psychologically. I’ve lived with severe chronic pain for 10 years now, and have really struggled with the effect on my mental health.

  17. Seriously Single Mom on August 17, 2022 at 10:09 pm

    YES!!! Thank you so much!!!!

  18. Helen Yates on August 17, 2022 at 10:11 pm

    For Dr Ramani
    I love the colours you choose to wear. Beautiful.
    Thank you for all your knowledge and understanding and information.
    Very good details for everyone. X

  19. bashir mustaf on August 17, 2022 at 10:15 pm

    Thank you so much

  20. Sari Jarvinen on August 17, 2022 at 10:16 pm

    What do I if my psychiatric medication are being rejected by my body?

  21. Florencia Mayagoitia on August 17, 2022 at 10:16 pm

    So I have a genetic disorder called Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, which affects the connective tissue in my body and causes tons of symptoms: chronic fatigue, chronic pain, migraines, tachycardia, sleep issues, etc. It took us years to figure out what was happening with my health, when I finally got my diagnosis it was life changing. It really made me realize how little I was listening to my body and what it needed, I had always been told that I looked fine therefore I should be fine, so I just tried to ignore all my physical and mental struggles. Now that I know better I realize how much what I eat affects my entire body and how I just have to let my body rest more than other people. I try to meditate and I go to therapy, but I still struggle with the expectations I have of myself and how much I should be able to do. It’s a daily task but I just have to learn to listen to what my body is telling me, to stay as healthy as I can.

  22. theogore on August 17, 2022 at 10:17 pm

    Dr. Ramani could go bowling with Rogan. He should have her on his podcast!

  23. Truth is Everything on August 17, 2022 at 10:17 pm

    Chronic autoimmune pain and illness is insurmountable. I’m not able to get more than 3 hours of uninterrupted sleep either. Following all the best advice will not alleviate this curse.

  24. Paesito Paez on August 17, 2022 at 10:18 pm

    For me it was a vicious cycle. I’d get depressed and I would go party like there was no tomorrow, abuse sleep medication, alcohol, food, tobaco and other drugs, and because my depression would get worse, I’d be more tempted to repeat those harmful things.

  25. 131 313 on August 17, 2022 at 10:19 pm

    i’ve struggled with depression for a little over half my life at this point and i’m coming up on 30. it has made me neglect my health/ life in general in so many ways.
    the main one i could list is a form of gum disease that is currently incurable. after a traumatic experience that made my mental health the worst it had ever been i nearly gave up on taking care of my teeth in any way except to brush my teeth every morning and sometimes before bed, no flossing or mouthwash which i now understand are super important!!
    i now see that that disease was actually my minds way of making me feel safe by having terrible breath in order to keep people at a distance from me and in hopes of preventing another experience like what i went through. i believe that all of my health problems essentially boil down to that and that my body is really trying to protect me the best it can given my current circumstances and what i have to work with. not to say that it’s the best way of coping at all.
    most of my incurable diseases i now realize / feel validated through this video were a result of the effects my depression and anxiety have on me. i choose to stay unmedicated due to a traumatic experience i had as a result of being on meds in high school and now look for alternative/
    more natural ways to help my mental illnesses but everyone has a choice about that and what works for some people doesn’t for others etc.

  26. Pot8oes R Gr8 on August 17, 2022 at 10:19 pm

    A good way to get some exercise in is during commercials while watching tv. Or on youtube, many ads come up. During the ads, people could jog in place, jump, squats, etc.

  27. Susie Clark on August 17, 2022 at 10:21 pm

    Sometimes I faint or get dizzy and ive been trying to find out why since forever and I just finally found out its because my blood oxygen is too low. It makes me so tired which in turn makes me want to be lazy and eat junk food. That all affects my sleep which makes me more tired the next day and it feels like I’m in a cycle and I get depressed. Then when it feels like I’m out of time and somethings got to give, I pull myself up and clean and run and cook and groom myself and set up my clothes for the next day etc, and then I love life again and then I eventually lose motivation again because I get burned out from having too much on my plate.

  28. Mary Hamilton on August 17, 2022 at 10:22 pm

    Great video

  29. Lauri Lavi on August 17, 2022 at 10:25 pm

    An LED light will carry the blue light frequency even if the color temperature of that light is not blue itself so best to stick non LED lights for enormous stress reduction. -Lauri

  30. Laura Gadille on August 17, 2022 at 10:26 pm

    It’s hard for me to do exercises when I have chronic back pain or my PCOS is acting up

  31. adrija chakravarti on August 17, 2022 at 10:30 pm

    Hey, first of all a biiiig thank you for making these videos which gives us such brilliant insight into what we are dealing with… I was diagnosed with BPD last year and have been suffering from chronic aches and pains. For some reason I always knew it was coming from the mind and now it all makes so much sense! Once again, Thank you.

  32. Cassandra Ramirez on August 17, 2022 at 10:33 pm

    I have mental illnesses AND chronic illnesses and I find it just so impossible really, because like you guys said, one affects the other, so I’m literally ALWAYS experiencing either mental or physical distress because when I have one, it seems to tend to cause the other, which in turn tends to cause the OTHER, and it’s just a vicious cycle! An extremely vicious, seemingly never-ending, cycle…

  33. Pru-Pruh on August 17, 2022 at 10:33 pm

    I have a bunch of different dx, among them chronic depression, ADHD-PI and Autism. I have so many dental issues already because I have trouble with my dental hygiene, and the thought of that can make me spiral because I am so ashamed and angry with myself for not being able to solve it. Also, I am way more stable mentally now that I take mini pills to help prevent migraines. It’s a weird coincidence, but I think I am just straight up all too sensitive to hormonal imbalance. The mini pill has been a godsent to me, and fortunately I have been really good at taking them regularly.
    Big migraine and mental health win for me.

  34. Frances Bernard on August 17, 2022 at 10:34 pm

    Very important whenever you’re a complainant who suffered trauma to go see a medical professional right away after the injury no matter how trivial it seems in the moment with someone else you trust who can stay with you the entire time until your injuries are recorded properly on your medical history file. The reason is because sometimes a person injured can sometiems end up in denial about the extent of that injury during shock and because sometimes medical professionals will for whatever reason fail to recognize the extent of those soft tissue injuries. That kind of thing happens more often to more fair skinned women because so many people have this idea in their head that women are the weaker sex and that people with fair skin all bruise easier and for example that anyone with white skin in the winter would be sure to at least exhibit enough brusing to them when they expect it to show up as signs for them during diagnostic procedure.

  35. Deborah Cantwell on August 17, 2022 at 10:35 pm

    Some things not mentioned I’ve had doctors chock my symptoms up to stress, tension or anxiety with regard to headaches when I subsequently found out I have rheumatoid arthritis in my cervical spine resulting in several subluxating vertebrae and stenosis causing my neck to be unstable. So doctors should make sure we don’t have underlying conditions causing the problem. The same thing with severe fatigue I was told to change antidepressant medications then my hematologist diagnosed underlying health problems I have anemia and couldn’t believe I could even get out of bed it was so bad. If I would have just listened to my family doctor I would not have gotten to the root of the problem.

  36. Success by Design on August 17, 2022 at 10:37 pm

    Wow, I needed to hear this… I need to move my body

  37. ّ on August 17, 2022 at 10:38 pm


  38. Elizabeth O'Callahan on August 17, 2022 at 10:38 pm

    I’m really disappointed this video did not address health issues that impact mental health, such as chronic pain and chronic medical conditions having an adverse impact on one’s mental health. Diet, sleep and exercise can help, sure, but it’s not sufficient to address the guilt, frustration and feelings of loss, hopelessness and uselessness that can come with these so often stigmatized medical conditions in our ableist society.

  39. Sarah Stephenson on August 17, 2022 at 10:39 pm

    I’ve definitely had stress induced migraines and they are the WORST. I would love to see the Dr.’s take on how to deal with nausea that’s due to anxiety. That’s my biggest struggle at the moment.

  40. definty on August 17, 2022 at 10:40 pm

    What do you do when you have been ill fo so long you forgot what was normal?

  41. Eujanio Coutinho on August 17, 2022 at 10:42 pm


  42. Msgoody 2shoes on August 17, 2022 at 10:43 pm

    My section 8 neighbors marijuana and smoked heroin cause me migraines