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What is the difference between fitness and health?

Fitness is the ability to perform specific tasks well. Fitness is often very specific to goals or tasks. The fitness needed to be an elite marathon runner is much different from the fitness needed to be an NFL linemen. Both are very good at their chosen sports but have much different bodies and abilities but both are very “fit." Health is the absence of disease both mentally as well as physically. Health means a person has good physical health, no injuries, diseases or issues, and good mental health and well being. An athlete can perform with injuries of have lots of mental issues such as depression or drug dependencies, and still be “fit” but not have health. 

Fitness and health can be viewed in many ways.  Often time’s people may describe good fitness as being healthy and active.  Some differences between the two terms include but are not limited to the following.  Fitness is a state or condition of being physically active.  Fitness is a result of general nutrition and proper conditioning, and fitness is a state of general physical and mental well-being. 

Health is a much broader term and will vary from individual to individual.  People may describe themselves as healthy but that will depend on your description of what you feel is healthy.  Having an average or below average body mass index (BMI) may classify you as being healthy.  Keeping your body fat percentage below a certain number may also assist you in being healthy.  Health can include being free from disease and injury.  Again, health has a much broader outlook and can vary. 

Essentially many differences are present between the two but plenty is open to discussion.  Your main goal should be to keep high levels of fitness which should help result in a healthy lifestyle along with sound nutrition.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.