Move into the summer with the health benefits of movement

We all know getting up and moving around is what we are suppose to do to maintain and improve our health but we may not know the full extent to all the benefits movement has for us! Let’s start with all the amazing things it does for our body and then we will move on to the mind! Our joints are key parts of our body making it easier or harder for us to do things and get around! Movement creates a wider range of motion for our joints and makes us more flexible! Movement also compresses the joints which forces nutrients to the joints creating thicker and healthier joints. If you lack stamina exercise may be the key! Research has found that exercising stimulates the new growth of blood vessels. When you work out your muscles need oxygen to keep up with our exertion and they do this by rushing the muscles with blood, this creates more capillaries to grow creating denser networks of capillaries! Not only are you growing more blood vessels while you work out you are growing some muscles too! When you work out your muscles slightly tear and then as they heal they are creating stronger and bigger muscles! Those bigger muscles may help you lose some weight as well! The more muscle mass you have the more energy your body must use to use those muscles which ends up burning more calories which can translate to fat loss! There’s another very important muscle that benefits from exercise and that’s our hearts! Movement is one of the best things we can do for our heart health, exercising 30 minutes a day decreases our chances of heart disease by 40%! Also working out also works out our heart since it needs to work harder to pump blood to the muscles to provide oxygen. This makes the heart muscles stronger meaning when we are resting our hearts don’t have to work as hard to provide our body with enough oxygen giving us a lower resting heart rate. We could probably all use a little more stamina or endurance with our busy lives and movement may be the way to increase it. With short bursts of high intensity workout combined with traditional exercise can increase your endurance and stamina not only in your work out but also in your day to day life, giving you more energy to kick the day’s butt! Working out helps even more with our mental state, when we work out our brains are more able to handle stressful situations and stress i general. We get stressed in everyday life releasing cortisol into our bodies, this comes from our need to fight or flight but when we do neither and just stay at that desk our levels of cortisol never drop! So getting out and moving around lets your body know your away from the stressor letting your body create those feel good endorphins that help your brain and body! Those endorphins also boost your mood with in the first 5 minutes of exercise. Longer term exercise can help fight mild depression and anxiety by increasing serotonin production and release. If sleeping is another important thing movement can help us with, as little as 10 minutes of aerobic exercise can help you sleep better and longer. This is because serotonin plays a key role in your circadian rhythm so release and production of it makes this process more accurate and more efficient. The rise in our body temperature also seems to help reset of sleep cycle so if you work out in the mornings it may help keep your sleep cycle in order. Exercise can also help improve memory and help fight off brain diseases, one of the reasons this is so is because when we work out more blood vessels are made in the brain that supply the brain with oxygen and also supports the growth of nerve cells in the area of the brain associated with memory and learning. The best part is you don’t have to run a marathon in order to get the mood boosting benefits.  In fact, just one minute dancing with a broom around your kitchen, swinging your child in circles or pretending to be Rocky Balboa and jumping rope can yield brain benefits and greatly improve mood in just 60 seconds.

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Founder and CEO of Trulee Foods, Sherry Lee White speaks, blogs and contributes to national publications on the topics of mind-body and food-mood relationships as well as other aspects of wellness.