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  The Minority/ Black Health Blog  

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

You Already Know You Should Do It, But Here's 5 Very Good Reasons to Exercise!

African American Exercising

Most people know the importance of exercise in keeping weight down. Does that mean that people who are not overweight don't have to exercise? No. Exercise is good for everyone's body. Here are 5 excellent ways in which exercise helps the body stay healthy and strong.

#1 - The Heart - exercise can prevent heart attacks and heart disease by keeping the arteries flexible. It also reduces other factors such as blood pressure, glucose, triglycerides and total cholesterol that can all lead to heart disease.

#2 - The Brain - regular exercise increases the levels of serotonin in the brain, a chemical that affects mood, appetite and sleep.

#3 - Alzheimers Disease - people who exercise and remain active have a lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease or dementia. Even those diagnosed with Alzheimer's disease are more likely to slow its progression through regular exercise.

#4 - Bones - regular strength-training exercise can prevent a bone disease called osteoporosis. This disease makes the bones porous, or thin and weak. People with osteoporosis are more likely to break bones in the hip, spine and wrist that will affect mobility and result in living with pain. Exercise improves bone strength.

#5 - Belly - exercise prevents the buildup of belly fat that is a contributor to diabetes. Diabetes leads to high blood pressure and increased risk of strokes.

How Much to Exercise
The Mayo Clinic recommends doing 150 minutes a week of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes a week of vigorous exercise. That is only 15-30 minutes per day, based on a 5-day week for exercise. Also include strength training at least twice a week. You don't have to join a gym to exercise. Exercise can include walking, bike riding or swimming. More vigorous exercise can include activities such as sports--basketball or tennis, or running. Inexpensive hand-held weights can be purchased for strength training, or by doing some landscaping or gardening.

The key to ensure that exercise produce produces the best results for the body is to make it a habit. Start out slow but be consistent. After you begin to see and feel the results, you will be be hooked!
DISCLAIMER: The content or opinions expressed on this web site are not to be interpreted as medical advice. Please consult with your doctor or medical practitioner before utilizing any suggestions on this web site.