Written By Salina Jivani
We hear it all the time—exercise! Live an active lifestyle! Thirty minutes a day will keep the fat at bay!
You know you should exercise. It’s just as common sense as knowing you should brush your teeth after every meal and shower every day. But the magic question is: are you doing it? Are you investing in your body just as seriously as you do in your career, your appearance or your home? If the answer is no, you’re probably causing a lot more harm than you realize.
Several studies and research show an inverse correlation exists between lack of exercise and your chances of having these three health risks—among others.
This one’s probably the most obvious of the three. But do you ever wonder how exercise affects heart disease?
Exercising improves your body’s blood circulation, also lowering the bad (or LDL) cholesterol levels, which can form fatty deposits in your arteries and clog them, and helping lower or regulate your blood pressure.
When you don’t exercise, the reverse happens. Fatty deposits quickly take residence in your arteries, your blood circulation is affected, meaning you have an increased chance of blood clots, which can lead to heart attacks, and your heart, because of all these pressures and obstacles, has to work harder to do its job, putting it at heightened risk of disease or an attack.
Exercise reduces the risk of cancers such as colon and breast, but people who lead sedentary lifestyles increase their chances of contracting such cancers. Certain studies have shown that adults who take exercise seriously and look to challenge their workout regimens by continuously increasing them in duration, intensity or frequency can lower risk of colon cancer by anywhere from 30 – 40%. With breast cancer, the risk decreases anywhere from 20 to 80%, and with endometrial and lung cancer, the risks decrease at a similar rate beginning at 20% and going upward to 40% for endometrial cancer.
Like many parts of the human body, joints are healthiest when they are put to work routinely—meaning when you exercise regularly. People who have made exercise a part of their daily routines are less likely to develop arthritis. And if you already have it, you may still have a shot of reversing some of its painful effects. An established exercise routine can help reduce joint aches and increase strength and flexibility while also helping fight fatigue.
Of course exercise benefits more than just your body. It helps you maintain a healthy frame of mind and fights depression. To add icing, regular exercise can help many of us maintain a fresher appearance, younger-looking skin and toned bodies well into the later part of our lives. All the more reason to spend those thirty minutes a day on your body; think of it as an investment you’ll never regret.