Eaternal Health | Pillar 2 – Exercise
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Pillar 2 – Exercise

Pillar 2 – Exercise

A lack of movement is considered the new smoking. There are so many studies showing that a lack of movement is correlated with poor health. Equally too much exercise can be damaging.

Exercise is not all about going further, going faster. It is like everything else; it’s about balance. Too much exercise can be as damaging as too little.

The balance we benefit from includes moving regularly throughout the day. A small study in a nephrology department in America found the following: ‘Trading 2 minutes/hour of sedentary activity with light-intensity activity was linked to 33% lower mortality in the general population and 41% lower mortality in those with chronic kidney disease (CKD), according to an observational analysis published online April 30 in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology’.

Those figures are quite mind blowing.

Further studies suggest a reduced risk of type 2 diabetes with moderate exercise.

Exercise or movement assists the metabolic functions of the body; it helps the body detox waste, promotes good immune function, reduces stress levels, improves energy levels, promotes good digestion and gut bacteria and so much more.

In Dr Dale Bredesen’s book The End of Alzheimer’s he gives 8 reasons to exercise all of which support good mental health and are directly correlated to the onset of Alzheimer’s disease. Dr B recommends a combination of aerobic exercise with weights for 4 or 5 days a week for 45 to 60 minutes.

The best place to start is walking. The target of 10,000 steps is well known, but if this is further than you can go, start with 5 minutes a day and build up until you can achieve 10,000

If you are time starved build small exercise routines into your normal day – remember squats whilst the kettle boils, stretching whilst waiting for the shower to warm up, press-ups against the unit whilst cooking (don’t try to stir hot pans at the same time!*%!!)

Good muscle formation assists good balance and good balance reduces falls thus avoiding broken bones. Developing good muscle with resistance exercises also encourages bone remodeling, making bones stronger.

The message is to move – move to raise you heart beat – aerobic exercise. Strengthen muscles using weights. Stretching – allows the muscles to release tension and warms them up before exercise. It improves joint flexibility and reduces risk of injury during exercise. Some believe it releases trapped emotions from the tissues too.

So aim to move daily, include some aerobic exercise during the week with some resistive exercise thrown in (weights) and for those who exercise more regularly, you may wish to add a burst of high intensity interval training like bungees, lunges, jumping jack or simple sprinting. What ever you do, make sure it is something you like to do.

I’m off now to play with the dogs in the garden – they keep me on my toes!