Blazej Lyjak/ShutterstockWhen we seek help for a mental health condition, we can expect to hear about various medications and treatment options, but what’s often missing from the conversation is any talk of lifestyle changes. In a recent University of Illinois study (link is external), about half of those with symptoms of mental illness reported that they receive no wellness advice from their health care provider.

That’s a lamentable oversight because lifestyle changes—things as simple as nutrition and exercise (link is external)—can have a significant impact on quality of life, for any of us, but especially for those dealing with issues such as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. They can also help minimize the development of risk factors that can lead to conditions like diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and hypertension, all of which are seen at higher rates in those with mental illness, the study noted.

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