Regular exercise provides many health benefits such as an increase in hormone production, reduces the risk of disease, and helps you lose weight. It will further enhance your bone and skin health, boost your sexual life, and help you live longer.
Importance of Exercise
Sedentary lifestyle is the key cause of serious health-related problems. This is the reason regular exercise and a proper diet are the most important ways to stay healthy. If you don’t get enough, you’re more likely to develop age-related muscle weakness. As you do less exercise, you will become more breathless. If you remain inactive, you will feel worse, and even everyday activities will become challenging. The combination of no exercise and a sedentary lifestyle increases your risk of age-related diseases and premature death. Here are the top 10 benefits of regular physical activity that are backed by scientific studies.
1. Enhances memory
Exercise can improve the function of the brain and preserve memory by increasing the blood flow and oxygen into your brain. In addition, it can boost the growth of brain cells by stimulating hormones. Exercise can help prevent chronic disease because these conditions may influence your brain’s function. The hippocampus is an important part of the brain used for memory and learning. Exercise can grow the size of the hippocampus and improve brain function in older people.
Summary: Exercise has various mental health benefits, such as enhancing brain function and memory by increasing blood flow and oxygen levels. It stimulates hormones, which promote the development of brain cells. Exercise may also help reduce brain variance, which is a major cause of Alzheimer’s disease.
2. Increases energy
Exercise can prevent various medical disorders with positive energy. In many studies, it has decreased fatigue syndrome in healthy people. It may improve energy levels in people with CFS and other serious diseases. It appears to be effective in fighting CFS than other therapies such as relaxation and stretching. Physical training improves energy levels in people with progressive diseases like cancer, HIV/AIDS, and multiple sclerosis.
Summary: Exercise can help prevent a variety of medical conditions. It has been shown in several studies that it can reduce fatigue syndrome in healthy people. It may also boost energy levels in people suffering from CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome).
3. Helps in sleep quality
You can relax and rest better after physical activity. During exercise, energy is used to animate recovery processes. It can improve the quality of sleep by dropping the temperature after a physical workout. Various studies on sleep have produced the same results. One study found that a mild exercise of 150 minutes a week can lead to an increase in sleep quality by 65%.
Another study shows that 16 weeks of exercise improved the quality of sleep and served 17 people deeper and better sleep than the control group. In addition, it helped them to feel more energetic during the day. It can also help the elderly who have problems with their sleep. Both resistance and aerobic exercise can improve the quality of sleep in people suffering from insomnia.
Summary: During exercise, energy is used to influence recovery processes. It can improve body temperature and sleep quality by lowering your body temperature after a workout. A moderate exercise of 150 minutes per week will improve your quality of sleep by 65%.
4. Improves skin health
The oxidative stress may influence your body. Oxidative stress occurs when the antioxidant defence system cannot recover from the damage caused by the free radicals. This can damage your cells and make your skin worse. Although physical activity can contribute to lower oxidative tress that can increase the production of essential antioxidants in your body, which protects your body’s cells. Exercise can stimulate blood flow and lead to renewal of the skin cells, which prevents the skin from the damage.
Summary: Oxidative stress takes place when the body’s antioxidant defence system cannot repair the damage caused by free radicals. This can damage your skin and cause inflammation. Exercise can increase blood flow and cause modifications in skin cells, which can protect the skin from damage.
5. Promotes a better sex life
Exercise can improve the blood circulation of the cardiovascular system and improve your sex life. A group of women in their 40s found that when they had stronger workouts such as sprints and weight training, they felt more orgasms. A group of 178 men had a higher sexual function who literally spent additional hours of training each week. One study in 41 men found a decrease in erectile dysfunction by 71% just by performing daily walking routine. Another study in 78 sedentary men shows that 60 minutes of walking a day improved sexual performance and satisfaction. Research has also shown that women who had polycystic ovary syndrome increased their sex drive after 16 weeks of physical activity.
Summary: A daily walking routine can reduce erectile dysfunction by 71%. Regular exercise can also increase sex drive in women with polycystic ovary syndrome.
6. Decreases chronic pain
Chronic pain can make you very weak, but you can reduce it by performing physical activity. Sleep and inactivity were the recommendations for many decades. Recent research shows, however, that physical activity contributes to chronic pain reduction. Various studies show that exercise reduces chronic pain and improves overall life quality.
Summary: Several studies show that physical activity can reduce health-related pain, including chronic low back pain. It can also give you the potential to tolerate the pain by decreasing the sensation.
7. Makes you feel happier
Physical activities improve your mood and reduce the likelihood of depression, nervousness, and stress. It can lead to brain changes that control stress and anxiety. It can further enhance brain awareness of serotonin and norepinephrine hormones that reduce depression feelings. In addition, it can boost endorphins, which is believed to decrease body pain. Physical activities can reduce the symptoms of anxiety by improving the awareness of the brain. Study shows that intense workout reduced symptoms of depression in women. Another study in 26 healthy men and women continued exercise for two weeks. Those who stopped exercising experienced an increase in symptoms.
Summary: Exercising can induce brain changes that regulate stress and anxiety. It may increase brain production of serotonin and norepinephrine hormones, which help to ease depressive symptoms. It may also increase endorphins, which reduces pain in the body.
8. Can help you lose fat
According to the studies, a sedentary lifestyle is the major cause of obesity. To lose fat, it is very important to combine exercise with TDEE (total daily energy expenditure) in order to understand the effect of exercise on weight loss. Losing body weight by dieting alone will slow down your metabolism. Exercises increase your metabolic rate and help you reduce body weight. Studies show combining nutritious diet with exercise can preserve lean muscle mass and boost fat loss at the same time.
Summary: Exercise raises the metabolic rate and aids in weight loss. Dieting on its own will slow your metabolism. Combining diet and exercise can help you maintain lean muscle mass while also increasing fat loss.
9. Prevents chronic disease
Sedentary lifestyle is the key cause of many chronic diseases. Thus, regular exercise can decrease sugar level in the blood and reduces your blood pressure. A lack of exercise can contribute to an increase in belly fat that can cause type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and premature death. Regular exercise can prevent these risks consistently.
Summary: Sedentary lifestyle is the risk factor for many chronic diseases. Regular exercise will consistently reduce these risks and will help you live longer.
10. Good for your bones
Regular exercise plays a key role in the management of healthy bones. Weight lifting combined with an adequate amount of whey protein can strengthen your bones and overall health. It can help in the release of hormones that enhance the ability of your body to absorb amino acids. This encourages the muscle and the bones to grow. When people get old, you lose both bone and muscle, which can lead to injuries.
Summary: Exercise promotes bone density and prevents osteoporosis. Exercises such as running, gymnastics, soccer, and basketball are more important than swimming and cycling, especially for the preservation of bone density.
Exercise can boost the production of hormones, reduce the risk of disease, and help you lose weight. It can further enhance your skin health and improve your sexual life. If you perform a particular exercise daily, you can ultimately improve your overall health.
- Resilience to Alzheimer’s Disease: The Role of Physical Activity. Curr Alzheimer Res. 2017.
- Physical activity and feelings of energy and fatigue: epidemiological evidence. Sports Med. 2006.
- Interventions for fatigue and weight loss in adults with advanced progressive illness. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2012.
- Thermoregulation as a sleep signalling system. Sleep Med Rev. 2004.
- Aerobic exercise improves self-reported sleep and quality of life in older adults with insomnia. Sleep Med. 2010.
- Exercise-stimulated interleukin-15 is controlled by AMPK and regulates skin metabolism and aging. Aging Cell. 2015.
- Steroid hormones, the menopause, sexuality and well-being of women. Psychol Med. 1996.
- Sexual activity and perceived health among Finnish middle-aged women. Health Qual Life Outcomes. 2006 May.
- A home-based walking program improves erectile dysfunction in men with an acute myocardial infarction. Am J Cardiol. 2015.
- Impact of Physical Resistance Training on the Sexual Function of Women with Polycystic Ovary Syndrome. J Sex Med. 2015.
- Physical activity and exercise for chronic pain in adults: an overview of Cochrane Reviews. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2017. PMID: 28087891
- Influence of Exercise Intensity for Improving Depressed Mood in Depression: A Dose-Response Study. Behav Ther. 2016.
- Exercise and the metabolic syndrome. Diabetologia. 1997.
- Exercise-induced reduction in obesity and insulin resistance in women: a randomized controlled trial. Obes Res. 2004.
- Influence of Adolescents’ Physical Activity on Bone Mineral Acquisition: A Systematic Review Article. Iran J Public Health. 2016.