The Benefits of Exercise
No matter what age you are, exercise and physical activity is extremely beneficial to your overall health and wellbeing. There’s no “one size fits all” when it comes to exercise – the possibilities and varieties are endless. As the human body ages, it’s especially important to keep up with physical activity, as it can help to enhance mobility, flexibility and balance. Exercise not only provides various physical benefits, but mental and emotional benefits as well. Here’s just a few of the many benefits of exercise:
Combat Health Conditions and Chronic Diseases
Good cardiovascular health is extremely important as it can lower your risk for developing chronic diseases. Regular exercise has been shown to improve your cholesterol, body composition and cardiovascular fitness while decreasing blood pressure and blood fat levels. Maintaining these can lower your risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis and certain cancers.
Brain Health and Memory
In older adults, aging, combined with oxidative stress and inflammation, can promote changes in brain structure and function. Exercise helps to improve brain function by increasing your heart rate – promoting the flow of blood and oxygen to your brain. It can also stimulate your hormones to enhance the growth of brain cells. Some studies even show exercise can reduce the changes in the brain that can cause Alzheimer’s disease.
Reduce Chronic Pain
If you’re dealing with chronic pain, it can truly be debilitating. Exercise can actually help to reduce it and has been shown to have favorable effects on the pain that is associated with various conditions. Of course it is advised to check with your physician first before beginning any new type of exercise or rigorous activity that could negatively impact your chronic pain.
Improve Mood and Happiness
Physical exercise can be a huge stress reliever. The endorphins produced when your heart is pumping have been shown to reduce feelings of sadness, depression and anxiety – while producing positive feelings! It doesn’t matter how intense your workout is, if you start moving your body, your mood will benefit.
Increase Energy Levels
If you’re feeling tired and worn out on a regular basis, try incorporating 30 minutes of physical activity into your day a few days a week. Exercise has been known to boost energy in healthy people as well as those suffering from various medical condition such as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and even cancer. If you make regular exercise a habit, you will begin to notice the effects on your energy levels in a short amount of time.
Maintain Strong Muscles and Bones
As we age, it’s extremely important to maintain strength, muscle mass and function – without it, we’re more prone to injuries and disabilities. Exercise releases hormones that promote the ability of your muscles to absorb amino acids, thus reducing their breakdown. Just as exercise helps to build bone density when we’re younger, it can help prevent osteoporosis later in life.
- Group Fitness
These are only a few of the many ways exercise and physical activity can benefit not only those over the age of fifty, but people of any age. At CONA, we strive to help our patients reach their desired level of health and wellness and fully believe in the power of physical activity at ALL ages. Contact us today to learn more!