Top 7 Reasons to Exercise

I’ll admit it, I’m getting closer to the BIG 30 and I’m a little freaked out. I don’t want to age… we’ll let me rephrase … I know aging is inevitable, but I’m determined to age gracefully like fine wine.  So, since nutrition and health is my specialty, I’ve read countless research articles and books from nutrition, fitness and anti-aging experts about the secrets to youth.  I’ve learned that you won’t find the answer to youth in the latest anti-aging cream, Botox or some nip-tuck.  Although, I’m NOT against any of these methods, I will say however that many of these creams and procedures are temporary, expensive and require lots of upkeep.  The closest and CHEAPEST way to the fountain of youth is … Exercise! That’s right; it’s the only thing that will keep you young.
Here’s why.  Regular physical activity “strengthen your muscles and improve heart and lung function, but it can also reduce your risk of major diseases, stimulate the growth of new brain cells, and even add years to your life”.  
  1. Keep you young. Brisk walking or cycling boost the amount of oxygen consumed during exercise. Improving your aerobic capacity by just 15 to 25 percent would be like shaving 10 to 20 years off your age.
  1. Younger cells.  The latest research discovered that people who exercised regularly have longer telomeres.  Say what?! Telomeres are the DNA on either end of thread-like chromosomes. Telomere length is critical to the aging process – once telomeres get too short, cells stop dividing and die. This research suggests that the anti-aging benefits of exercise go all the way to the molecular level.
  1. Fight infections. Moderate workouts temporarily rev-up the immune system by increasing the aggressiveness or capacity of immune cells.  Hence, people who exercise catch fewer colds.
  1. Stabilize blood sugar. Exercise helps maintain a healthy blood-sugar level by increasing the cells’ sensitivity to insulin and by controlling weight. Regular brisk walking can significantly cut the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
  1. Cancer protection. Exercise may reduce the risk of colon-cancer by speeding waste through the gut and lowering the insulin level. It may also protect against breast and prostate cancer by regulating hormone levels.
  1. Combat stress. Regular aerobic exercise lowers levels of stress hormones. For many people, exercise helps relieve depression as effectively as antidepressant medication.
  1. Relieve PMS. Increasing fitness by walking or practicing yoga enhances mood and reduces many PMS symptoms, such as cramps and heavy period flow.
So, let’s get moving!  Only 30 minutes of physical activity on most days is all that’s required to keep you young and beautiful.  Are you game?

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