Exercise: A Prescription for Good Health - Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare

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Published on April 27, 2015

Exercise: A Prescription for Good Health

The physicians of Midwest Orthopedic Specialty Services encourage you to get active and stay active. Exercise is “medicine” and key to good physical as well as emotional health.

Whether you have a small frame, large frame or something in between, exercise can help you make the most of the body you were born with.

Top Ten Reasons to Exercise

  1. Regular exercise decreases the risk of illnesses like heart disease, diabetes, osteoporosis, high blood pressure and more. Exercise strengthens your heart muscles, helps control cholesterol, reduces the risk of stroke and heart disease, improves circulation, lowers blood pressure and, along with diet, controls obesity, which can lead to diabetes and other illnesses. Research shows that if you exercise regularly, you can live up to 4 years longer than your sedentary friends.
  2. You’ll feel more energized. When you exercise, more blood and oxygen flow to your working muscles. Your metabolism also increases. These two things give you a burst of energy that lasts throughout the day.
  3. You’ll burn calories even when you’re relaxing. Exercise increases muscle mass and muscles burn far more calories at rest than body fat. As you build muscle, you increase your resting metabolic rate.
  4. Reduces stress. Exercise stimulates the release of hormones into your body - endorphins and adrenaline. Endorphins improve your mood and general sense of wellbeing. Adrenaline increases blood flow, carrying more oxygen to the brain. This makes you more alert which helps you effectively deal with stress.
  5. Increases overall strength. Regular exercise strengthens all of your muscles and connective tissues, strengthens bones, and improves balance and posture as well as your breathing.
  6. Improves flexibility. Don’t skip stretching before and after exercise. It helps your muscles become more elastic, which improves overall range of motion and flexibility.
  7. Increases lean body mass. When you exercise, lean body mass increases and replaces body fat. What a great exchange!
  8. Improves concentration. Exercise increases the flow of blood and oxygen to the brain and balances essential hormones. This increases your ability to concentrate and stay focused.
  9. You’ll recover more quickly if you get sick or injured. Exercise helps your body repair itself by building muscle tissue and increasing white blood cells. This helps you heal quicker and reduce inflammation as a result of injury or surgery. White blood cells also fend off harmful bacteria that can make you sick.
  10. You’ll improve your overall appearance. In addition to feeling better, you’ll look better with a firm, toned body.

It’s clear that the benefits of regular exercise far outweigh the comfort of an extra hour under the covers or sitting on the sofa watching TV. So get up and get going today! You’re sure to live longer and have a happier life.

Learn more about Midwest Orthopedic Specialty Services.

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Exercise: A Prescription for Good Health