the general condition of the body or mind with reference to soundness and vigor: good health; poor health.
soundness of body or mind; freedom from disease or ailment: to have one's health; to lose one's health.
a polite or complimentary wish for a person's health, happiness, etc., especially as a toast: We drank a health to our guest of honor.
vigor; vitality: economic health.

Nearby words

  1. healing,
  2. healing by first intention,
  3. healing by second intention,
  4. healing by third intention,
  5. healingly,
  6. health camp,
  7. health card,
  8. health care,
  9. health centre,
  10. health check

Origin of health

before 1000; Middle English helthe, Old English hǣlth. See hale1, whole, -th1

Related formshealth·ward, adjective, adverbsub·health, noun

Can be confusedhealth heath Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for health

British Dictionary definitions for health



the state of being bodily and mentally vigorous and free from disease
the general condition of body and mindin poor health
the condition of any unit, society, etcthe economic health of a nation
a toast to a person, wishing him or her good health, happiness, etc
(modifier) of or relating to food or other goods reputed to be beneficial to the healthhealth food; a health store
(modifier) of or relating to health, esp to the administration of healtha health committee; health resort; health service


an exclamation wishing someone good health as part of a toast (in the phrases your health, good health, etc)

Word Origin for health

Old English hǣlth; related to hāl hale 1

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for health



Old English hælþ "wholeness, a being whole, sound or well," from Proto-Germanic *hailitho, from PIE *kailo- "whole, uninjured, of good omen" (cf. Old English hal "hale, whole;" Old Norse heill "healthy;" Old English halig, Old Norse helge "holy, sacred;" Old English hælan "to heal"). With Proto-Germanic abstract noun suffix *-itho (see -th (2)). Of physical health in Middle English, but also "prosperity, happiness, welfare; preservation, safety."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for health




The overall condition of an organism at a given time.
Soundness, especially of body or mind; freedom from disease or abnormality.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

Idioms and Phrases with health


see clean bill of health.

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.