8 Unexpected Benefits of Regular Exercise
Want to feel happier, full of energy and have a healthier life? Then, you’re in luck because, apparently, all you need to do is exercise.
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Being active is beneficial for everyone, regardless of age or sex, improving your body and mind and even adding years to your life. So, get motivated by these unexpected benefits of exercising and start working out as much as possible to change your life for the better.
Relieve stress and anxiety
According to studies, regardless of its intensity, exercise can increase levels of serotonin and norepinephrine, relieving the brain’s response to stress and anxiety. It is also a very efficient way to reduce mental tension and feel better about yourself due to the release of endorphins, chemicals responsible for positive feelings.
So, whenever you feel stressed out or depressed, hit the gym or simply go for a jog. You’ll see the results right away!
Improve mental health
As sad as it may be, as we age, our brains lose their sharpness and mental agility. Diseases such as Alzheimer’s affect brain cells and consequently important brain functions.
To prevent this from happening, it is of great importance to stay active and exercise constantly. When exercising, the heart rate accelerates, thus facilitating the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain. Moreover, it stimulates the neurogenesis process, that is the growth of brain cells.
Promote relaxation and sleep
Having trouble falling or staying asleep? Studies show that regular physical activities improve the quality of sleep even for people with severe sleep issues, such as insomnia.
One of the reasons is that during workout, the body’s core temperature increases. Consequently, after workout, the temperature drops back to normal while energy stores deplete, indicating the body that it’s time for sleep and the recuperative process.
When you’re in pain, the last thing on your mind is working out. But don’t rule it out just yet.
Recent studies have indicated that exercise is a great ally against chronic pain, such as fibromyalgia or chronic low back pain, significantly reducing it. More than that, physical activity, especially aerobic training, can increase pain tolerance and decrease pain perception.
Increase energy levels
Contrary to popular belief, when you feel tired, the answer is not always rest. Regular exercise is apparently a very effective way to counteract fatigue and boost energy levels even for people suffering from chronic fatigue syndrome or other illnesses.
During exercise, more oxygen-rich blood is pumped to the lungs and throughout the body and, consequently muscles. When muscles receive more oxygen, you have more energy to face daily challenges and chores head on.
Improve love life
Love is all you need, but sometimes a good rest sounds better. Fortunately, regular exercise has been demonstrated to have unexpected beneficial effects on sex drive and performance of both men and women.
Improved blood circulation, higher energy levels, higher flexibility and better self-esteem due to improved physical appearance, are only a few of the exercise-related factors that contribute to a better love life.
More than that, constant exercise enhances sexual arousal of women and reduces the risk of erectile dysfunction for men.
Promote healthier skin
Genetics, stress and fatigue can add years to your skin and make you look older. But you don’t have to resort to expensive skincare treatments to fix that. All you have to do is exercise and observe the changes.
Moderate physical activity improves blood circulation, thus providing oxygen and nutrients to all the cells in our body, including skin cells. This way, they receive the nourishment they require to produce natural antioxidants and protect skin aging.
In addition, exercise reduces skin inflammation, controls skin-related hormones and facilitates the elimination of free radicals from cells.
Fight off colds
Believe it or not, regular exercise seems to play a significant role in preventing colds. This is due to the fact that physical activities, even simple ones such as walking for 30 minutes or moderate jogging, generate a higher number of white blood cells. These, in turn, help your immune system to fight off infections and keep viruses away.
This is especially efficient on the long term. According to studies, individuals who exercise regularly enhance their immunity and reduce the risk of catching colds and flu by half, compared to their sedentary counterparts.