What do you call exercise?
Well, every movement that makes your muscles work and puts your body into a calorie-burning mode is also known as exercise.
So you know, there are various types of exercise such as swimming, running, jogging, walking and dancing.
But these are just a few of them …
Luckily, staying healthy provides you many health benefits, both physically and mentally. And it helps you live longer. (studies say)
So, why is exercise important?
And which are the health benefits of exercise?
Let’s dive in and discuss the top ten ways on how regular exercise helps your body and brain.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #1: It Can Make You Feel Happier
You see, exercise improves your mood and decreases the feeling of depression, anxiety, and stress.
How does it do it?
Having a healthy exercise routine produces changes in the parts of your brain that regulate stress and anxiety. It increases brain sensitivity for the serotonin and norepinephrine hormones, relieving feelings of depression.
More than that, exercising increases the endorphins levels, hormones known for producing positive feelings, and reducing your perception of pain.
If you suffer from anxiety, exercise is also a useful tool to help you relieve the unpleasant symptoms. It makes you more aware of your mental state and distracts you from your fears.
Surprisingly, it doesn’t matter how intense your workout is …
Even if you have a strenuous workout, or you prefer to work out lightly, your mood will still improve.
How do you know it?
A 24-women study shows that exercising at any intensity significantly decreases feelings of depression. The effects are so powerful that practicing any exercise makes a difference even in the short term.
Another study conducted on people who exercised regularly shows that if you stop practicing any movement, you will have increases in a negative mood. At least that’s what happened with the people from the study that stopped exercising.
So, one of the health benefits of exercise is it can improve your mood and reduce feelings of anxiety or depression.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #2: It Can Help With Weight Loss
Sadly, inactivity is the primary factor in weight gain and obesity.
Understanding the impact of exercise on weight-loss, you need to know there’s a strong bond between exercise and energy expenditure.
How does your body spend energy?
In three simple ways …
Food digesting, exercising and maintaining body functions (like heartbeat and breathing).
You see, while dieting, a reduced calorie intake lowers your metabolic rate, delaying weight loss. On the other side, exercising increases your metabolic rate, helping you burn more calories and lose more weight.
If you want to increase your weight-loss processes, combining aerobic exercise with resistance training maximizes fat loss and muscle mass maintenance. Both of them are essential for keeping the weight off.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #3: It Helps Your Muscles And Bones
You see, exercise plays a vital role in building and maintaining strong muscles and bones. And activities like weight lifting stimulate muscle building when you pair it with proper diet too.
Well, exercise helps you release hormones promoting the ability of your muscles to absorb amino acids. In this way, your muscles grow, and their breakdown reduces.
Sadly, as you age, you tend to lose muscle mass and functions, leading to injuries and disabilities. And that’s why practicing regular physical activity is vital to reduce muscle loss and maintain strength as you grow older.
Even more, exercise helps you build bone density when you’re younger, preventing osteoporosis.
Surprisingly, high-impact activities such as gymnastics or running support a higher bone density than non-impact sports like swimming and cycling.
As a summary, one of the health benefits of exercise is it helps you build stronger muscles and bones.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #4: It Can Increase Your Energy Levels
Looking for a great way to boost your energy levels?
You got your answer …
Thankfully, exercise boosts your energy levels even if you’re healthy or you suffer from different medical conditions.
Studies show that six weeks of constant exercise reduces feelings of fatigue, making you a more energetic person. Even more, if you have chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) or other serious illnesses, exercise can significantly increase your energy levels.
Case studies show that exercise seems to be more effective at treating CFS than other treatments. Thankfully, passive therapies, such as relaxation and stretching can help you better than regular medicine.
If you have progressive illnesses (such as cancer, HIV/AIDS, or multiple sclerosis), exercise can increase your energy levels, helping you cope better with the symptoms.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #5: It Reduces Your Risk Of Chronic Disease
Wondering what the main cause of chronic disease is?
Lack of regular physical activity.
You see, constant exercise improves insulin sensitivity, cardiovascular fitness, and body composition, decreasing blood pressure, and blood fat levels.
On the other hand, if you don’t exercise regularly …
You can significantly increase your belly fat, which leads to a higher risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, or even early death.
So, if you want to reduce belly fat and decrease the risk of developing chronic diseases, physical activity should be your go-to option.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #6: It Can Help Skin Health
Ever heard about oxidative stress?
Well, oxidative stress affects your entire body, and most times, your skin.
When does it happen?
It happens when your body’s antioxidant defenses can’t repair the damage that free radicals do to your cells. And the outcome is the damage to their internal structures and skin deterioration.
Even if intense and exhaustive workouts can lead to oxidative damage, regular moderate exercise increases your body’s production of antioxidants, protecting your cells. It stimulates your blood flow and causes skin cell adaptations, delaying the appearance of skin aging.
As a summary, one of the health benefits of exercise is it provides you antioxidant protection and promotes blood flow. It protects your skin and delays signs of aging.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #7: It Can Help Your Brain Health And Memory
Who doesn’t need a good memory and a healthy brain, right?
Thankfully, exercise improves both of them.
How does it do it?
By increasing your heart rate, physical activity promotes the flow of blood and oxygen to your brain. It stimulates the production of hormones that enhance the growth of brain cells.
More than that, exercise prevents chronic diseases, leading to more benefits for your brain, since it can be affected by some of these diseases.
So, especially if you’re an adult, exercise should be one of your main priorities in life. And that’s because as you age, there are higher risks to suffer from oxidative stress or inflammation.
Another great benefit of regular exercise is it reduces changes in your brain that can cause Alzheimer’s disease and schizophrenia.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #8: It Can Help With Relaxation And Sleep Quality
So you know, regular exercise can help you relax and sleep better too.
Well, the energy depletion that happens when you exercise stimulates recovery processed during sleep.
More than that, your increased body temperature that happens during exercise is known to improve sleep quality by helping it drop during your time in bed.
One particular study shows that 150 minutes of moderate activity per week improves your sleep quality by 65%.
Even more, another study shows that 16 weeks of physical activity can increase your sleep quality if you have insomnia. It can help you sleep deeply, longer, and make you feel more energized throughout the day.
Usually, troublesome sleeping patterns happen when you’re older, so you should add exercise to your routine even more as you age.
What physical activity should you practice?
You can go for any aerobic exercise as it seems like either aerobic exercise alone or aerobic exercise combined with resistance training can almost equally help sleep quality.
So, why is exercise important?
It’s important because it can help you sleep better and feel more energized throughout the day.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #9: It Can Reduce Pain
Chronic pain can be …
But exercise can help you reduce it.
You see, for many years, doctors told you to treat chronic pain by resting and being inactive. But things changed along the road …
And it seems like regular exercise helps you reduce chronic pain and improve your quality of life. It can help you control associated pain from various health conditions, such as chronic low back pain, fibromyalgia, and chronic soft tissue disorder.
Even more, exercise raises pain tolerance and decreases pain perception.
So, let’s summarize.
One of the health benefits of exercise is it has potential effects on the pain that’s associated with different conditions, increasing pain tolerance.
Health Benefits Of Exercise #10: It Promotes A Better Sex Life
Who doesn’t want a better sex life?
I do …
And I’m sure you want that too.
Thankfully, exercise boosts your sex life. (for sure)
How does it do it?
Practicing regular exercise strengthens your cardiovascular system, improving blood circulation. It tones your muscles and enhances flexibility, all of them leading to better sex life.
Even more, besides improving your sexual performances, exercise can improve sexual pleasure too. And increase the frequency of sexual activity.
A study conducted on women in their 40s shows that they experienced orgasms more frequently when they added strenuous exercises (like sprints, boot camps, and weight training) into their lifestyles.
Another study conducted on 178 healthy men shows that regular physical activity improved their sexual function scores.
Just a simple routine of a six-minute walk around the house can help reduce erectile dysfunction symptoms by 71%. And a 60-minute walk per day can improve your sexual behavior (including frequency, functioning, and satisfaction).
So, why is exercise important?
It’s important because it offers you incredible benefits that improve nearly every aspect of your health.
It increases the production of hormones and can make you feel happier and help you sleep better.
More than that, it improves your skin’s appearance, helps you lose weight and keep it off, lessens the risk of chronic disease, and improves your sex life.
Both programs helped me lose weight and feel more energized by incorporating a proper exercise routine and a healthy, easy-to-sustain diet.
Both plans provide you easy-to-do exercises and easy-to-follow diet plans that can make your health journey easier and more enjoyable.