The Definition of Health

According to the World Health Organization, “health is a state of complete well-being, the absence of illness or infirmity.” However, different definitions have been used throughout the years for various purposes. While some definitions focus on disease and others on infirmity, there are several more specific definitions that have been derived from a variety of sources. These are briefly explained below. Regardless of the definition used, the goal of maintaining good health is the same: to achieve a sense of wellbeing.


The concept of health is often defined in quantitative terms: the function of the body or the likelihood of an impending disease. The concepts of physical health and mental health are commonly outlined in textbooks of clinical medicine and diagnosis. The examination of a person’s health typically involves a number of tests, some of which are more descriptive than quantitative. Other tests are used to assess the severity of a condition, such as whether a patient has diabetes, cancer, or heart disease.

The World Health Organization has a definition of health that emphasizes social, personal, and physical resources. It also includes a psychological element, which is related to a person’s situation and environment. This broader definition of health has many advantages, but also has some limitations. The subjective component is one of the most important components of health and is an important element to consider. Moreover, the definition of health is often too individualistic, and it fails to recognize other more general determinants of health, including environmental factors and physical conditions.