Dear friends! Today we will talk about the health benefits of physical activity. According to the definition of the World Health Organization (WHO), physical activity is any body movement produced by skeletal muscles and requiring energy.
So physical activity is movement. And movement is one of the main functions of every living organism. Physical activity, perhaps, is the only component with which we can manage our daily caloric need, and thus control and reduce excess weight. You can read about it here .
If we want to get the most out of the movement to improve the quality of our health, it’s very useful to know the positive effects, but also the possible risks that need to be considered before exercising.
Positive effects from properly performed physical activity
- A) Effect on the circulatory system and respiratory system:
- optimizes the functions of the cardiovascular and respiratory systems (reduces the heart rate at rest, as well as when performing exercises of medium and submaximal intensity, increases efficiency and improves the functioning of the heart;
- increases the lumen of the coronary arteries and capillaries of the heart muscle, slightly lowers blood pressure at normal or high pressure, increases the maximum oxygen consumption (aerobic potential, VO2max);
- the combination of increased aerobic capacity and optimal fat reduction is the most effective way to reduce stress;
- Older people get tired very quickly and physical activity eliminates fatigue and increases mental and physical performance.
- B) Reducing the risk of heart disease and circulatory system:
- people with a sedentary lifestyle are much more likely to have coronary heart disease than physically active people;
- people with movement deficit are much less likely to survive the first heart attack than a person who regularly goes in for sports;
- clearly improves the quality of life of patients with heart artery disease. This significantly reduces the risk factors for coronary heart disease and reduces health care costs.
- B) Positive effect on some chemical processes in the blood:
- reduces the risk of atherosclerosis by changing the activity of many enzymes. Reduces the level of blood fat (triglycerides) and cholesterol (risk factor for atherosclerosis), on the contrary increases the level of “good” cholesterol, which reduces the risk of atherosclerosis;
- with a sedentary lifestyle, the need for insulin hormone, which regulates sugar metabolism, increases. Overproduction of insulin leads over time to a partial depletion of pancreatic internal secretion and an increase in the likelihood of developing diabetes. Optimal physical activity increases the sensitivity of muscle fibers to insulin and stabilizes sugar metabolism. That is why regular workouts of optimal intensity prevent diabetes.
- D) Helps reduce fat and optimizes weight:
- training speeds up metabolism, mobilizes fat reserves and increases energy output. The combination of workouts with proper nutrition leads to weight loss;
- A combination of physical activity and low-calorie foods is the most effective method to reduce central obesity (excessive deposition of fatty tissue in the abdominal area). The biggest risk factor for middle-aged and elderly people is visceral fat , which causes diabetes, defects in fat metabolism in the blood, the development of coronary heart disease, heart attack and sudden death.
- D) A positive effect on mental activity:
- reduces stress, fear, depression and aggressiveness, improves the quality of sleep and increases self-confidence;
- helps older people to reduce the time of the psychomotor reaction, improves coordination of movements and the management of everyday tasks;
- It has a positive effect on getting rid of bad habits: smoking, alcohol and drugs.
- E) A positive effect on systems that ensure human movement:
- improves flexibility and strength of ligaments and tendons, joint flexibility, increases muscle strength and endurance;
- leads to an increase in the capillary network in skeletal muscle. Increases the volume of mitochondria and the activity of their enzymes. That is why fat metabolism is accelerating;
- bone architecture is improved and the risk of osteoporosis is reduced.
- G) Positively affects the human transport system:
- reduces platelet aggregation, increases plasma volume and decreases blood density. It prevents the formation of atherosclerotic plaques.
- H) Positive effect on work efficiency:
- increases productivity and power. Reduces the risk of disease, the number of accidents at work and the cost of treatment.
And) slows down aging:
- helps reduce free radicals by increasing the volume of mitochondria, increases the activity of our own antioxidant enzyme systems.
Possible risks to be taken into account during physical activity
- positive family history – heart attacks with siblings or parents (men under 50 years old, women under 55 years old);
- diseases of the heart and arteries – ischemic disease of the heart, brain vessels, legs (age does not matter);
- the presence of risk factors for coronary heart disease – smoking, high blood pressure (systolic blood pressure above 160 mm Hg, diastolic above 90 mm Hg), overweight or obesity ( BMI over 25 or 30), high cholesterol ( above 6.2 mmol / l), high atherosclerotic index, high sugar and uric acid in the blood;
- chronic diseases of internal organs after infections;
- after surgery, tumor;
- degenerative changes in the central joints and spine;
- age over 40 years for men and 50 for women with a sedentary lifestyle and low physical activity.
Naturally, in the presence of the above risks, prior consultation with your doctor is necessary.
For the overall positive effect of physical activity on health, certain conditions must be met:
- Select according to your age, health and physical condition the main type of aerobic physical activity during which oxygenation of the blood takes place (oxygenation).
- Determine the optimal load, aerobic optimal length of the route for training and the weekly frequency of training in accordance with your state of health, age and physical condition.
- Choose the right strategy to increase the load.
- Make the training program universal – perform compensatory and restorative exercises that reduce one-sided load on the body and increase the overall resistance of the body.
- Make exercise a part of your lifestyle that brings you joy and improves your mental and physical condition.
Good luck and health friends! Enjoy physical activity.