To test the hypothesis that self-compassion predicts better physical health and that this is partially mediated through health-promoting behaviours, 147 adults completed self-report measures of self-compassion, health-promoting behaviours and physical health. Self-compassion and health-promoting behaviours were negatively associated with physical symptom scores. Self-compassion was positively associated with health-promoting behaviours. A bootstrapped mediation model confirmed a significant direct effect of self-compassion on physical health through health-promoting behaviours ( R2 = 0.13, b = -8.98, p = 0.015), which was partially mediated through health-promoting behaviours ( R2 = 0.06, b = -3.16, 95 per cent confidence interval [-6.78, -0.86]). Findings underscore the potential health-promoting benefits of self-compassion.