The range of health bonuses now attributed to exercise may surprise you, but they are backed by science. Doctors even seemed surprised, I am completely amazed this is not common sense! We need research to prove moving our body, the way nature intended, is good for us??? What has happened to human beings’ collective common sense??? Here’s a GREAT article by Stephen Hawkings, as he addressed the #obesity epidemic that surrounds us.
OK… let’s look at the benefits of daily exercise, moving your body:
1. Disease doesn’t grow in an oxygenated, pH body. Exercise boosts the amount of oxygen you consume during and after exercising. This benefit of increasing oxygen consumption is how we increase our aerobic capacity and live longer. More oxygen to the cells means healthier cells and longer cell life spans. Exercise coupled with daily practices such as drinking alkaline (pH balancing) water (Lemon water) lesson the chance of cancer cells taking over your bod. Every minute of good exercise and it does not need to be hard, pounding exercise, adds two to three minutes to your life! Can you get payoffs like that with any other investment? Makes sense to me that it stimulates the growth of new brain cells in anyone who exercises!
2. Healthier, glowing skin. When we exercise we increase our oxygen intake capabilities (see above) and increase our circulatory function. This means blood, lymph and intra-cellular fluids all move about your body more efficiently. The micro capillary beds of your face (really, your whole body’s skin) work at top notch keeping you young and vibrant looking. More oxygen and food nutrients will arrive at your cells and cellular waste products will more efficiently removed from your cells. This means better waste removal both through efficient respiratory expiration and your fluid circulation. End result: healthier cells, including skin cells. Your skin and whole body will glow with health!
3. Fewer asthma problems. Yoga breathing exercises have long been used to increase respiratory capacity and ease the symptoms of asthma. When people with mild asthma exercise regularly and increase their aerobic capacity and their lung strength, they can reduce the need to use their inhalers. THIS SAVED MY LIFE!!! As a chronic season Asthmatic, I was “sick” every August through November and February through April — all of my life, until I took a more stringent, holistic approach warrior style. Iam blessed that I was a great athlete, or that I became a great athlete to bless others.
4. Boost the immune system and reduces infections. Your immune cells work faster and more efficiently when you are a regular exerciser. Those white cells rev up their aggressiveness against antigens entering your body. A better functioning immune system cuts down on the viral and bacterial ills we pick up; cold, flus, etc. — PS: Great herbs help boost the immune system too (ask me about this.)
5. Better blood sugar control. When you exercise (and eat a whole food diet) your body will shed the extra pounds. This creates a stable blood sugar regulation mechanism; lower insulin levels, lower and stable levels of blood sugar. What a great way to prevent diabetes. If you are an adult onset diabetic, what a great way to heal your body from this lifestyle induced disease.
6. Lessen your risk for cancer. Exercise prevents constipation. A properly functioning colon is less likely to develop cancer. People with balanced blood sugars, see above, have less chance of developing colon cancer. When our bodies are functioning well from whole foods, exercise and lifestyle choices, our hormones balance out creating a lesser chance of developing hormone related cancers: breast and prostate.
7. Fewer heart attacks, prevention of heart attacks. Exercise raises your HDL cholesterol. This is the cholesterol that is considered “good,” the cholesterol reading we want to be high. Exercise is great for reducing inflammation in the body; less inflammation, less heart attacks, strokes and the resultant vascular health problems.
8. Lowers stress levels. Regular exercise reduces stress levels in the body, mind and soul creating calmer and more centered human beings. We were meant to move. Moving helps to burn up those “fight or flight” hormones in a healthy manner. Exercise is a great remedy for relieving mild anxiety, frustration and depression. Think of it as movement meditation, movement “medication!”
9. Better sleep. A body that moves daily will sleep better for all reasons: physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. Make it outdoor exercise and the fresh air and natural light exposure increases this benefit many times over!
10. Prevents and restores bone loss. Moving your body keeps the bones healthy and young. The bone cells lay down more new bone, preventing and reversing osteoporosis.
11. Stronger muscles, better flexibility and balance. Exercise keeps your muscles strong. Moving through full range of motion everyday keeps your muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints flexible and strong. Exercise creates balance in body, mind and spirit. Yoga is one great way to increase your muscle strength while creating better flexibility and balance for ease of movement!
12. Better organ function and health. Anything that makes your body stronger is going to make all organs, right down to your very cells, function better. Better circulation means better oxygen and nutrition being transported to the cells and better waste removal from the cells. This makes for healthier cells, organs and ultimately a healthier You!
13. Improve mood, concentration, nervous system function and memory. Healthier bodies with healthier circulation means healthier brains for both intellectual and mood functioning! See section, above, on lowering stress levels.
14. Weight loss and loss of belly fat. We are back to the common sense thing again, moving your body, as opposed to sitting on the couch, will keep you naturally thinner. The body was meant for movement, so it stands to reason it will be thinner with less belly fat than an inert body mass! Forty-five minutes of moderate-to-vigorous exercise in the morning may actually reduce your food cravings so you eat less all day. That is a healthy body bonus!
15. Reduces Inflammation. Inflammation in the body is the precursor to chronic lifestyle diseases. Reduce your bodily inflammation and you reduce disease. See heart attack information above.
16. Regulates your appetite, reduces cravings, promote healthy digestion. When you feel good from moving, you are more apt to want to accentuate these good feelings with good food, avoiding the junk. When you eat good food and feel great, you are more apt to feel like moving. What a wonderful catch 22!
17. Lowers LDL cholesterol and triglycerides, raises HDL cholesterol. Trust me, you want this to happen! Again, see heart attack information above
18. Balances sex hormones. Full body exercise keeps your sex hormones balanced: this means goodbye PMS and menopausal symptoms, hello healthy life! Exercise to reduce and possibly remove the symptoms of: PMS and menopause. Men benefit with lower incidence of erectile problems and increased overall “male” healthiness. Pelvic exercises, called kegel exercises, help prevent reproductive and urinary organ prolapse, clitoral erectile dysfunction and urinary leaking in females; impotence/erectile dysfunction and possibly enlarged prostate which is a common cause of urinary symprtoms in males. Women benefit as they have the same erectile tissues in their external genitalia. Men, despite not having a monthly menstrual flow, do have a monthly hormonal cycle. Regular exercise keeps this sex hormone cycle at top notch function. Because all body hormones and chemicals work in synergy, healthy sex hormones keep the rest of your body chemistry humming along in great health. Are your sneakers tied up yet?