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Day by day, in every way, I'm getting better and better. ~ Émile Coué

Health is a term referring to levels of functional or metabolic efficiency of living beings. In humans, it is the general condition of a person's mind and body, usually meaning to be free from illness, disease, injury or needless pain.


Alphabetized by author
If a man is in health, he doesn't need to take anybody else's temperature to know where he is going. ~ E. B. White
Health is the greatest gift, contentment is the greatest wealth, a trusted friend is the best relative, Nibbana is the greatest bliss. ~ Gautama Buddha
  • Song brings us health, and blossoms will heal wounds. Therefore, I say, happy are those who understand sound and color.
    • Agni Yoga, Leaves of Morya’s Garden: Book Two: Illumination, 108. (1925)
  • How much new health there is in diversity of place and of labor!
    • Agni Yoga, Leaves of Morya’s Garden: Book Two: Illumination, 327. (1925)
  • Lugal-murub the son of Zuzu, the master-scribe of Nibru, has fashioned for Nintinuga his messenger (?) dog Tuni-lu-sag. That is why the dog will wag his tail or bare (?) his teeth for his mistress the queen of heaven and earth, the provider of food, the stewardess of Enlil, the sweet breast satisfying all lands, the bringer of abundance, who can diagnose the intentions of the virulent asag demon and who checks people's bones; who examines the sinews of life and the sinews of death, comforting those joints; who knows every sick spot where there is affliction, torment or distress -- the kindly physician, the exorcist to the sick, who looks after the hearts of humans.
  • The best six doctors anywhere
    And no one can deny it
    Are sunshine, water, rest, and air
    Exercise and diet.
    These six will gladly you attend
    If only you are willing
    Your mind they'll ease
    Your will they'll mend
    And charge you not a shilling.
    • Anonymous nursery rhyme set to the tune of "Yankee Doodle", quoted in "The Health Club" in School Life, Vol. IV (January - June 1920), p. 17
  • I am pretty sure that, if you will be quite honest, you will admit that a good rousing sneeze, one that tears open your collar and throws your hair into your eyes, is really one of life's sensational pleasures.
    • Robert Benchley, in "Hiccoughing Makes Us Fat" in No Poems: or Around the World Backwards and Sideways (1932).
  • Health is the greatest gift, contentment is the greatest wealth, a trusted friend is the best relative, Nibbana is the greatest bliss.
  • I reckon being ill as one of the great pleasures of life, provided one is not too ill and is not obliged to work till one is better.
  • Healthy does not mean "healthful." Healthy is a condition, healthful is a property. Vegetables aren't healthy, they're dead. No food is healthy. Unless you have an eggplant that's doing push-ups. Push-ups are healthful.
  • Scarcely more than two generations had tasted the fruits of industrialization when the growth of population was still further accelerated by truly effective death control. The role of microorganisms in producing diseases was discovered. In 1865 the practice of antiseptic surgery began. It serves... as a reasonable demarcation of the beginning of an era filled with related breakthroughs in medical technology: hygienic practices, vaccination, antibiotics, etc. The total effect of this recent series of achievements has been to emancipate mankind more and more from the life-curtailing effects of the invisible creatures for which human tissues used to serve as sustenance. Like other prey species newly protected from their predators, we have been fruitful and have so multiplied that we have much more than "replenished" the earth with our kind.
    These achievements in death control re-channeled the effects of industrialization; they increased the rate at which human population could increase. More of the unprecedentedly rapid rise in apparent carrying capacity resulting from industrial drawing down of resource stocks was devoted to supporting population growth, and less was devoted to supporting enhanced living standards, than might otherwise have been the case.
    Death control was a real boon to the first three or four generations that experienced it. Increasingly, parents were spared bereavement during their child-rearing years, and people of all ages were spared the suffering and debilitation that infectious diseases used to inflict. Fewer children became orphaned. Fewer adults became widowed in the prime years of life.
    But all these benefits helped us to overshoot permanent carrying capacity. For most people, as this was happening, "carrying capacity" remained an unknown phrase. The concept was absent from the paradigm by which people... perceived and understood their world. Industrialism had given us a temporary increase in opportunities-a very dangerous blessing. Death control gave us a further rapid increase in population not based on a further rise in carrying capacity. Thus, [...] mankind came into a really precarious situation.
  • The most effective route to achieving optimal health is by channeling the intrinsic methods that the human body has developed during its hundreds of thousands years on Earth. Recommendations that drastically diverge from this pattern will likely lead to poorer health, which is indeed what has been witnessed over the past three decades.
  • Thank Him for health. Consecrate it as His trust to innocent enjoyment, manly effort, social usefulness, and preparation for an honorable and holy career.
    • William Ellery Channing, reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 299.
  • Cur moriatur homo, cui salvia crescit in horto?
    • Why should (need) a man die who has sage in his garden?
    • Regimen Sanitatis Salernitanum, line 177. Original and translation. pub. by Sir Alexander Chope (1830).
  • Of all the garden herbes none is of greater vertue than sage.
    • Thomas Cogan, Heaven of Health (1596). Quoting from Schola Salerni, p. 32.
  • Tous les jours, à tous points de vue, je vais de mieux en mieux.
    • Day by day, in every way, I'm getting better and better.
      • Émile Coué, in his auto-suggestive formula for health, as quoted in The Practice of Autosuggestion by the Method of Emile Coué (1922) by Cyrus Harry Brooks
    • Variant translation: Every day, in every way, I'm getting better and better.
  • we can't be happy or healthy if we don't take care of our life support system, the planet.
  • If you resolve to give up smoking, drinking and loving, you don't actually live longer; it just seems longer.
  • Nor love, nor honour, wealth nor pow'r,
    Can give the heart a cheerful hour
    When health is lost. Be timely wise;
    With health all taste of pleasure flies.
    • John Gay, Fables (1727), Part I. Fable 31.
  • If you start to think about your physical or moral condition, you usually find that you are sick.
  • A cool mouth, and warm feet, live long.
  • He that goes to bed thirsty rises healthy.
  • Christ's gospel could never have been delivered by one who was diseased.
    • John McClellan Holmes, reported in Josiah Hotchkiss Gilbert, Dictionary of Burning Words of Brilliant Writers (1895), p. 299.
  • There are three wicks you know to the lamp of a man's life: brain, blood, and breath. Press the brain a little, its light goes out, followed by both the others. Stop the heart a minute, and out go all three of the wicks. Choke the air out of the lungs, and presently the fluid ceases to supply the other centres of flame, and all is soon stagnation, cold, and darkness.
  • If you wish to keep as well as possible, the less you think about your health the better.
  • The causes which affect human health are often obscure, many of them so subtile that they are discerned with difficulty, and can only be appreciated by those who devote their time to the study and observation of them through all their changes. They even sometimes escape the keenest observation of the most accurate observers; yet it is reasonable to suppose that those who prosecute such investigations with zeal actually make some progress in knowledge; and if any discovery of knowledge be made, it is not a matter of doubt that it should be employed to assure the public good. It is easier to preserve health than to cure disease, and it implies less expense of means.
  • With your talents and industry, with science, and that stedfast honesty which eternally pursues right, regardless of consequences, you may promise yourself every thing—but health, without which there is no happiness. An attention to health then should take place of every other object. The time necessary to secure this by active exercises, should be devoted to it in preference to every other pursuit.
    • Thomas Jefferson, letter to Thomas Mann Randolph, Jr. (July 6, 1787); in Julian P. Boyd, ed., The Papers of Thomas Jefferson (1955), vol. 11, p. 558.
  • How sickness enlarges the dimension of a man's self to himself!
  • …act to protect the health and well-being of our employees.
Protecting access to the full range of reproductive health care, including abortion, is a critical business issue. Efforts to further restrict or criminalize that access would have far-reaching consequences for the American workforce, the U.S. economy and our nation’s pursuit of gender and racial equity.
  • In minds crammed with thoughts, organs clogged with toxins, and bodies stiffened with neglect, there is just no space for anything else.
    • Alison Rose Levy, in "An Ancient Cure for Modern Life" in Yoga Journal (January - February 2002).
  • Health consists with Temperance alone.
  • Will you touch, will you mend me Christ?
    Won't you touch, will you heal me Christ?
    Will you kiss, can you cure me Christ?
    Won't you kiss, won't you pay me Christ?
See my eyes, I can hardly see
See me stand, I can hardly walk
I believe you can make me whole
See my tongue, I can hardly talk.
See my skin, I'm a mass of blood
See my legs, I can hardly stand
I believe you can make me well
See my purse, I'm a poor, poor man.
  • Healthy people are invalids who don't know it.
  • Without your will you cannot be rehabilitated. Motivation to be healed is the crucial factor in rehabilitation.
  • May be he is not well:
    Infirmity doth still neglect all office
    Whereto our health is bound.
  • As a people, we have become obsessed with Health. There is something fundamentally, radically unhealthy about all this. We do not seem to be seeking more exuberance in living as much as staving off failure, putting off dying. We have lost all confidence in the human body.
  • Ah! what avail the largest gifts of Heaven,
    When drooping health and spirits go amiss?
    How tasteless then whatever can be given!
    Health is the vital principle of bliss,
    And exercise of health.
  • Any action is often better than no action, especially if you have been stuck in an unhappy situation for a long time. If it is a mistake, at least you learn something, in which case it's no longer a mistake. If you remain stuck, you learn nothing. Is fear preventing you from taking action? Acknowledge the fear, watch it, take your attention into it, be fully present with it. Doing so cuts the link between the fear and your thinking. Don't let the fear rise up into your mind. Use the power of the Now. Fear cannot prevail against it.
    If there is truly nothing that you can do to change your here and now, and you can't remove yourself from the situation, then accept your here and now totally by dropping all inner resistance. The false, unhappy self that loves feeling miserable, resentful, or sorry for itself can then no longer survive. This is called surrender. Surrender is not weakness. There is great strength in it. Only a surrendered person has spiritual power.
  • The greatest achievement of humanity is not its works of art, science, or technology, but the recognition of its own dysfunction, its own madness… To recognize one’s own insanity, is of course, the arising of sanity, the beginning of healing and transcendence.
  • Illnesses are part of the cycle of nature; they disproportionately take out the old and the weak. Of course, we humans don’t really like this; the old and weak are our relatives and close friends. In fact, some of us may be old and weak.
    In the last 100 years, researchers (using fossil fuels) have developed a large number of antibiotics, antivirals and vaccines to try to suppress illnesses. We find that microbes quickly mutate in new ways, defeating our attempts at suppression of illnesses. Thus, we have ever-more antibiotic resistant bacteria. The cost of today’s US healthcare system is very high, exceeding what many poor people can afford to pay. Introducing new vaccines results in an additional cost.
    Closing down the system to try to stop a virus adds a huge new cost, which is disproportionately borne by the poor people of the world. If we throw more money/fossil fuels at the medical system, perhaps it can be made to work a little longer. No one tells us that disease suppression is a service of fossil fuels; if we have an increasing quantity of fossil fuels per capita, perhaps we can increase disease suppression services.
  • Health is the second blessing that we mortals are capable of: a blessing that money cannot buy.
    • Izaak Walton, The Compleat Angler (1653-55), Part I, Chapter XXI.
  • If a man is in health, he doesn't need to take anybody else's temperature to know where he is going.
    • E. B. White, in a letter to the New York Herald Tribune (29 November 1947).

Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations

Quotes reported in Hoyt's New Cyclopedia Of Practical Quotations (1922), p. 356-57.
  • Health and cheerfulness mutually beget each other.
  • When health, affrighted, spreads her rosy wing,
    And flies with every changing gale of spring.
  • Homines ad deos nulla re propius accedunt quam salutem hominibus dando.
    • In nothing do men more nearly approach the gods than in giving health to men.
    • Cicero, Pro Ligario, XII.
  • Health that snuffs the morning air.
  • Orandum est ut sit mens sana in corpore sano.
    • Our prayers should be for a sound mind in a healthy body.
    • Juvenal, Satires (early 2nd century), X. 356.
  • Pars sanitatis velle sanari fuit.
  • Qui salubrem locum negligit, mente est captus atque ad agnatos et gentiles deducendus.
    • He who overlooks a healthy spot for the site of his house is mad and ought to be handed over to the care of his relations and friends.
    • Marcus Terentius Varro, De Re Rustica, I, 2.
  • Gold that buys health can never be ill spent,
    Nor hours laid out in harmless merriment.


  • Tabi ni yande
    yume wa kareno o
    • Fallen sick on a journey,
      In dreams I run wildly
      Over a withered moor
    • Matsuo Bashō, attributed in Kodansha encyclopedia of Japan, Volume 1 page 145 (see Google Books).

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