The miracle cure you’ve been waiting for all your life: no snake oil, elixirs, panaceas or promises but…
Exercise can reduce, by up to 50%, the possibility of suffering major illness, illnesses like stroke, cancer, heart disease, or type 2 diabetes and lower the risk by up to 30% of an early death.
Unlike the elixirs, panaceas and promises offered on Facebook or elsewhere, exercise is the real deal when it comes to a miracle cure. Scientifically proven (by actual scientists) to back up its claims; exercise is free, easy to use, can have an instantaneous effect and you don’t need a prescription or dodgy over the internet remedies to get some.
Exercise is the free option we’ve always had, but have neglected as our lives and culture have changed. And we are suffering as a consequence.
Research has demonstrated that physical exercise not only helps you look good, but can also improve things such as confidence, the frame of mind, quality of sleep and energy levels, and on top of that can reduce stress, and your risk of suffering from depression, Alzheimer’s or dementia.
Dr Nick Cavill, a health promotion consultant says, “If exercise were a pill, it would be one of the most cost-effective drugs ever invented”.
A Modern Challenge
Simply put, we are less physically active these days, technology has made our lives easier, heavy industry is not the main economic force it was and has been replaced by the service industry, we drive or use public transport rather than walk.
Children don’t flood the streets playing football or Tick, or British Bulldog as they once did. Fewer people do manual work, and many people have jobs that involve minimal physical effort. Housework, shopping and other essential activities are simply less demanding than they were for preceding generations. This means, we move less and subsequently burn off less energy than people in the past.
Research shows that today many adults often spend more than seven hours a day sat down, either at work, in vehicles or during their leisure activities. If you are over 65, this rises to over 10 hours a day lying or sitting down.
The Benefits of Exercise
Overwhelming scientific evidence, tells us that if we want to live a vigorous and fulfilling life, we would all benefit from being more physically active. People who do regular physical activity have:
- up to a 35% lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke
- up to a 50% lower risk of type 2 diabetes
- up to a 50% lower risk of colon cancer
- up to a 20% lower risk of breast cancer
- a 30% lower risk of early death
- up to an 83% lower risk of osteoarthritis
- up to a 68% lower risk of hip fracture
- a 30% lower risk of falls (among older adults)
- up to a 30% lower risk of depression
- up to a 30% lower risk of dementia
How to get the Benefits
The key to staying healthy is for adults to be active on a daily basis, working toward the objective of achieving a minimum of 150 minutes over a week of physical activity utilising a variety of activities.
For many people, the easiest way to begin, is to make an activity a part of normal, everyday life, such as walking to shops, or the school to pick the kids up, or, instead of using the car, cycling to get around.
What follows is simple, the more you do, the better for you and the better you get at it. Taking part in organised sporting activities and exercise (especially in groups) will make you even healthier still.
To get the real benefits any type of exercise, it’s important to be moving quickly enough to:
- raise your heart rate
- breathe faster
- feel warmer
This level of effort is known as, moderate intensity. A fun way to check if you are working at this level is if you are still able to talk comfortably but can’t sing.
If you need to work harder, then this is known as vigorous intensity.
There is considerable evidence that this level of activity brings even more health benefits over those of moderate activity.
To tell if you are working at this level, you should be breathing hard and fast, your heart rate will have gone up a lot and you shouldn’t be able to say more than a couple of words without pausing for breath.
Dr Cavill says, “Previous generations were active more naturally through work and manual labour, but today we have to find ways of integrating activity into our daily lives”.
If you’d like to learn more about the health benefits of exercise, contact a member of our team today.