Best Preventive Medicine? Exercise
What’s your preventive medicine of choice? New research suggests exercise should be at the top of your list.
We’ve known for some time that exercise reduces the risk of early death, helps control weight and lowers the risk of heart disease, Type 2 diabetes and depression among other benefits. Now studies are showing exercise can be used as a preventive drug.
“Exercise works from tip to toe, and it prevents and in some cases treats the most commons diseases we see,” said Jordan Metzl, a sports medicine physician at New York’s Hospital for Special Surgery.
Despite the many benefits of exercise, most people in the United States are still not getting enough. It’s recommended that adults get at least 30 minutes a day of moderate-intensity physical activity.
This is in addition to the recommendations of at least 2.5 hours a week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or one hour and 15 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic activity.
By getting the advised amount of exercise per week or more, you’re doing your body a wealth of favors. Regular exercise can help with stress levels and promote better sleep. It has also been shown to help with stroke recovery and treating heart attacks.
If something can do that much good for you, why not fit as much of it into your life as you can? Exercise doesn’t have to be a big time-consuming part of your day. Even fitting in a few 10-minute workouts when you can would be doing yourself a favor.
Timothy Church, a physician and director of preventive medicine research at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge said, “Exercise strengthens the entire human machine – the heart, the brain, the blood vessels, the bones, the muscles. The most important thing you can do for your long-term health is lead an active life.”
Now that we’re in the New Year, make sure to make the time for exercise and help prevent any potential health problems.