15 English idioms and vocabulary about health

Do you consider yourself someone who follows a healthy lifestyle?  But wait a second… What does a person need to do in order to be considered healthy? Is it all about eating fruits and vegetables? Is a healthy person someone who exercises everyday? Or are we talking about leading a stress-free life? We will take a look at some vocabulary about health in English and idioms you can use when talking about a healthy lifestyle in English.  

Health is all about living a balanced life 

In order to be healthy, a person needs to do more than just one thing — being healthy is all about living a balanced life. It is necessary to eat wellexercise often, and maintain a healthy soul. Let’s take a look at each of those pillars for having a good and healthy life. 

Eating healthy food 

One of the very first reality shows I’ve ever watched was called “You Are What You Eat”. The nutritionist Gillian McKeith went to a person’s house in order to make them eat better. The show usually starts with Dr. McKeith shows the person everything they eat in the span of a week. She organizes everything on a table, which makes it look terrible. Lots of junk food, soda, cookies, cakes, and everything else you know is bad for you but you insist on eating. Then, she helps them to break the habit of eating unhealthy foods. Some people do well, some others can’t keep it up for long — you know what they say: old habits die hard

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How often do you eat junk food?

Idioms about maintaining good habits 

When talking about habits, it is common to use some idioms. Take a look at some of the most popular idioms about habits in English. Here is some more vocabulary about health in English:

Idiom  Meaning  Sentence 
to get into the habit  to begin to do something regularly  You must get Julia into the habit of eating fruits. 
old habits die hard  it means that it is difficult to stop doing something that someone has been doing for a long time  I can’t quit smoking. Old habits die hard, right? 
to be a creature of habit  someone who always does the same thing in the same way  He is such a creature of habit — he can’t go to bed without kissing me good night.  
to kick a habit   to stop bad habits, especially those that have a impact on someone’s health  I’m struggling with kicking the habit of drinking soda. 
to break the habit  to stop doing something that has become a habit, especially if it is bad  It’s hard to break a habit you’ve had since you were a teenager. 

Idioms about eating habits 

When someone decides to break the habit and eat better, they may also use some idioms to talk about their new routine. Check out some popular idioms to help you talk about new eating habits and a healthy lifestyle. Here is some more vocabulary about health in English:

Idiom  Meaning  Sentence 
to go on a diet  to start a diet  I have gained 20 pounds. I need to go on a diet
to count calories  to keep track of the amount of calories you eat in a day  Mary lost 30 pounds by counting calories
to slim down  to lose weight  Beth needs to slim down
to cut down on something  to eat or to drink less of a particular thing  Susan wants to cut down on diet soda. 
to watch what you eat   to pay attention to what you are eating, to avoid unhealthy foods  Tess, please watch what you eat! You have been eating too many cookies. 
to cut out  to take things out of your diet  I have decided to cut sugar out of my diet.  

There is also a common saying regarding the benefits of eating healthy. People often say the sentence “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”, which basically means that people who eat their five portions of fruits and veggies every day won’t probably need to go to the doctor so often.  

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An apple a day keeps the doctor away!

Exercising regularly 

Some people like to exercise at the gym. Others would rather go for a walk around their neighborhood or run in the morning. The thing is: as long as you are moving your body, it doesn’t matter what activity you choose to do. Check out some fitness idioms below and learn more about vocabulary about health in English.

Idiom  Meaning  Sentence 
to be in good shape  someone who is fit and healthy  Lisa, you are in such good shape!  
to be fit as a fiddle  to be very healthy and strong  He’s turning 70, but he’s fit as a fiddle
to be a gym rat  someone who spends a lot of time exercising in the gym  I used to be a gym rat
to get ripped  someone who has high muscle definition  Tony wants to get ripped. That’s why he works out every day.  

Taking care of your mind and soul 

Besides eating well and exercising often, it is also important to take care of your mind and soul. You can do that by practicing yoga, taking deep breaths, volunteering, meditating, reading self-help books, maintaining a journal, or attending religious services. All these activities can improve your mood, control your anxiety and depression, and even cure some diseases.  

health vocabulary esl, health idioms and phrases, healthy lifestyle vocabulary esl 

Even though we can’t really see the results of maintaining a healthy routine for our mind and soul in the mirror, it can definitely help us in our journey of becoming healthier people.