Health Current Events-Exercise Benefits
Due to modern machines and technology, most people no longer have to perform strenuous physical activity in their daily lives. However, human biology evolved in a very different environment, and still requires physical activity to function in the way it should. From better emotional well being to stronger hearts and longer, healthier lives, the benefits exercise offers should be enough to motivate everyone to get started.
How much exercise is needed
Respected institutions like the U.S. Surgeon General and the American College of Sports Medicine all recommend 30 minutes or more of exercise or some other strenuous physical activity on most days of the week. This does not have to be done all at once and can be broken into periods. For best results, at least three days a week should be devoted primarily to some type of aerobic activity and two more days devoted to muscle training and stretching.
While those who have not exercised in a long time should start out slowly, the exercise should reach moderate intensity and produce a noticeable increase in breathing and heart rate. This is by no means the maximum amount that is beneficial to the human body though, and those with the time and conditioning should take daily exercise to a higher level.
How exercise improves health
While most have heard at of at least some of the positive effects exercise has on health, what it can do cannot be overstated. With heart disease the number one killer in many nations now, its effects on the heart are the most important. Exercise strengthens heart muscles, increases blood output and lowers levels of bad cholesterol.
It also increases lung capacity and the body’s ability to use oxygen efficiently. With eased blood travel in the body, people feel like they have more energy when they exercise regularly.
Exercise is still the best diet plan. Apart from burning calories, exercise builds muscles and muscles improve the body’s metabolism rate so those who exercise burn more energy even when they are not working out.
Exercise and reduced cancer risk
While the exact mechanism at work is not clear, exercise has been shown to help prevent cancers to include colon, breast and lung cancer. It also helps people recover from different cancers. It is theorized this reduced cancer risk is likely related to the positive effects on weight, hormone levels and immune function exercise has.
Exercise and emotional health
Most people are less aware of the emotional benefits of exercise. Studies have shown that those who exercise regularly score higher on evaluation-of-life responses, and that those who do not exercise are more likely to suffer from depression. While it cannot be certain how much of this can be attributed to exercise and how much to other factors, exercise certainly gets some of the credit; exercise releases endorphins (natural chemicals that make people feel better), helps people look better and makes them feel more confident about themselves overall.
Osteoporosis and back pain
Weight training exercises help reduce bone loss due to aging while the increased strength and flexibility brought on by exercise also strengthens the back and prevents back pain.
While exercise has great effects that everyone can benefit from, it can be damaging if not performed properly. Anyone starting out on an exercise program should do it gradually and consult with a physician.