20 Proven health benefits of exercise
Think about it. A 30-minute walk every day can probably
do more for your health than all the efforts of a dozen
doctors and ten different types of medication.
Not only does exercise improve your health, even if you
have already been diagnosed with something, but it can go
a long way to prevent the onset of several
life-threatening conditions, such as heart disease,
diabetes and cancer.
And exercise can make you look great? younger, fitter
and thinner. Who needs any more convincing?
We have scrutinized the medical journals. Here's a
summary of the proven health benefits of exercise:
1. It's good for your heart
"Even a moderate amount of exercise helps your heart,"
says Dr William Kraus, associate professor of medicine at
Duke University Medical Centre in an article published in
The New England Journal of Medicine. "Some exercise is
better than none and more is better than less."
Exercise reduces LDL cholesterol, the kind that clogs
arteries. It also reduces your blood pressure, relieving
stress on your heart, it improves your insulin
sensitivity, improves the the heart muscle function and
blood flow and it diminishes the chances of developing
blood clots. These findings have been corroborated by a
host of studies over the years.
2. Exercise promotes weight loss
Research has shown that to have an effect on weight loss
you need to exercise for 30 minutes a day. You can also do
an hour of intensive exercise every second day if this
fits into your schedule more easily. Be consistent and be
regular. Do those one hour exercise sessions three to four
times every week, not just one week a month, and you will
achieve the result you desire - to lose weight and keep it
off, says Dr Ingrid van Heerden, registered dietician.