1. Helps Control Your Weight
Looking to maintain a certain weight? You’re in luck! Exercising can help you maintain weight AND help prevent excess weight gain. The cherry on top is that large chunks of time are not needed to reap the benefits of exercise. The more intense the activity is, the more calories you will burn. If you can’t escape during the day, no need to worry. Think of other ways you can stay active while at work or out and about. Consider taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or parking further from the store (and save your car from some dings too).
2. Exercise Lowers Blood Pressure
Your risk of high blood pressure (hypertension) increases with age, but exercising can make a big difference. Already have high blood pressure? Exercise can help you control it. We aren’t saying you need to run a Spartan race or compete in a half marathon. Start slow by working physical activity into your daily routine. Take a lunchtime stroll instead of sitting at your desk, or go for a walk after work when it’s cooler. Remember, slow and steady wins the race.
3. Exercise Improves Moods
Feeling gloomy? Or having a stressful day? A workout at your local gym or a brisk 30-minute walk can help. Now, for the science part. When we exercise, chemicals in our brain are stimulated, leaving you happier and more relaxed. An added bonus is a boost in your self-confidence and self-esteem.
4. Exercise Can Stop or Slow the Development of Diabetes
Do you or a loved one have diabetes? Exercising can cut levels of fat in the liver by up to 40 percent in people with diabetes, according to Johns Hopkins research. Whether you walk on the treadmill at your local gym or take a brisk walk after work, exercise can help you keep your blood glucose stay in your target range. Physical activity can lower your blood glucose up to 24 hours or more after your work out by making your body more sensitive to insulin.
5. Exercise Can Promote Better Sleep
Having trouble falling asleep? Tossing and turning all night? Exercising regularly can help you fall asleep faster and sleep deeper. Better sleep can be the magical ingredient that makes you want to get up and get out into the world to get things done on your to do list. Good nutrition, exercise and sleep are all essential ingredients of a healthy lifestyle.
6. Sharpen Your Memory
Forgot where you put your keys? Did you leave the oven on? Regular physical activity boosts memory and the ability to learn new things. If you’re looking to see improvements, consider walking or other forms of moderate-intensity exercises, such as swimming, stair climbing, tennis or soccer. You can also break a sweat around the house by raking leaves or mopping. Anything that will help you break a sweat works.
7. Stay Active and Independent as You Age
Exercising keeps your muscles strong, which can help you maintain mobility as you get older. If you or a loved one is older, don’t feel it’s too late to start exercising. Taking up exercise at any age offers benefits down the road. If you’re ready to get active, remember to start slowly and try exercises or classes you enjoy.
The Bottom Line On Exercise
Exercise and physical activity are great ways to start enjoying each day a little more, with added health benefits now and down the road. Remember, you don’t need to block out huge chunks of time to be active to improve your health. When you pair it with annual doctor exams, you’ll be on your way to a healthy lifestyle.
If you can’t make it to annual exams due to lack of health insurance, Nevada Health Link is here to help. As part of a Qualifying Life Event (QLE), you may be eligible for a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). In other words, certain life events or situations, such as job loss, income change, marriage/divorce or birth/adoption of a child, may allow you to enroll in an insurance plan through Nevada Health Link outside of the annual open enrollment period.
All of our health plans exist to reduce the costs of health insurance and make sure you are covered. We’re always to help, so don’t hesitate to reach out for assistance.