The #1 French Secret to Staying Happy and Healthy


By Joyce Chua from THREAD SG

French women hardly ever talk about fitness. They don’t exercise for the sake of burning calories, and the word “diet” to them means a wholesome, healthy way of eating, not restricting themselves and calorie-counting.

The French philosophy to life is simple: feeling good is the first priority. That’s why you’ll be hard-pressed to find them killing themselves at SoulCycle class every Monday and Thursday or going on a fad diet.

“When you feel good, you look good.”
— Mathilde Thomas, the author of The French Beauty Solution

“The erroneous notion of no pain, no gain”, as Thomas puts it, is something we need to stop subscribing to. The French believe that we shouldn’t have to suffer to look good, so any kind of wellness routine is unsustainable if it makes us miserable.

This concept is also seen in the French approach towards exercise. It’s no secret that the French walk — or cycle — everywhere. They prefer outdoor activities to sweating it out on a treadmill indoors. So while boutique gyms are sprouting up recently in France, the emphasis is on exercises like Sophrology that calm your mind, body, and soul.

The key takeaway? Working out and eating well should alleviate your stress, not add to it.

So before you go on that crash diet that leaves you lightheaded and cranky, or spending two hours pounding away on the treadmill to make up for the burger you had for lunch, consider the French approach to holistic wellness. It’s more than a fad; it’s a lifestyle.

[Related article : French Beauty 101- 5 Benefits of Using Micellar Water]