12th Mar 2018
As little as thirty minutes of exercise five days week can make a big difference to your well-being.
WHAT EXERCISE DOES FOR YOU?
- Reduces the risk of heart disease
- Lowers blood pressure levels
- Improves cholesterol levels
- Reduces the risk of osteoporosis
- Promotes weight loss
- Helps to de-stress
- Improves circulation
- Improves posture
- Improves agility, balance and flexibility
EXERCISE STRENGTHENS THE HEART
The heart is a muscle and like any other muscle, it works better and more efficiently when it is in shape. Exercise makes the heart stronger, helping it to pump more blood with each heartbeat. A well-conditioned heart can pump a large amount of blood with fewer heartbeats than a weak heart. Exercise makes the heart more resistant to stress, heart attack and heart disease.
HOW CAN EXERCISE PREVENT HEART DISEASE?
Physical inactivity is a major cause of heart disease. Exercise can control diabetes and also reduce excess body weight, cholesterol levels and high blood pressure.
WHAT IS THE BEST TYPE OF EXERCISE FOR THE HEART?
Aerobic exercises such as walking, jogging, swimming, running and bicycling are ideal exercises for improving the functioning of the heart. They make the heart work harder to pump blood and therefore, more oxygen is delivered to the body’s cells.
Being busy or active either in the office or with household chores does not provide the benefits of regular exercise. Aerobic exercises can condition the heart and lungs if performed adequately. A minimum of 30 minutes of exercise, 3 to 5 times a week is essential. Simple, moderate intensity activities such as walking, climbing stairs or gardening will keep your heart healthy, fit and strong.
YOUR BONES NEED EXERCISE
Osteoporosis is a bone-weakening disease that develops gradually and makes bones fragile and susceptible to fracture. This affects women especially as they begin to lose bone density after the age of 30.
Surgeon and fitness consultant Dr Jukar says, “Weight bearing exercises can improve calcium deposition in the bones, building strength and stamina and increasing bone density. People who exercise regularly are less likely to suffer from fractures or bone injuries and ailments such as arthritis; osteoporosis and back pain can be reduced or prevented with regular exercise.”
WHAT KIND OF EXERCISE STRENGTHENS BONES?
The two types of exercise that help strengthen bones are weight bearing and resistance training exercises.
Weight bearing exercises are those in which the bones and muscles work against gravity. Any exercise where the feet and legs bear the body’s weight while exercising is called a weight bearing exercise. Examples are walking, jogging, and climbing stairs, dancing, tennis, golf and soccer.
Resistance training exercises are those exercises that use resistance to strengthen the bone and muscles. Examples are weight-training exercises using machines, free weights or body weight.
EXERCISE IS GOOD FOR THE MIND TOO!
When stress is built up in the body the muscles become tense, breathing becomes shallow and you may experience forms of physical discomfort, such as headaches or extreme fatigue. It makes sense, then, to relax the muscles and bring the body and mind back into a state of balance. The better way to relieve stress is to exercise.
EXERCISE IS BETTER THAN ANY PILL
Any physical activity, be it yoga, breathing techniques, stretching exercises, running or martial arts – can help release stress. Whether or not you are feeling stressed or low, exercise will rev up your mood and help you feel more positive. This is because exercise gets blood flowing to your brain and that can have the same effect as drugs prescribed for depression. Also, exercise triggers the release of endorphins, which are hormones that produce a sense of well-being.