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Wellness of Mind and Body through the Benefits of Exercise

In the last ten years, scientists looked into how exercising can enhance brain function. Whatever the person’s age or fitness level, research proves that setting time for exercise brings some considerable mental benefits.

Below are six ways regular exercise can help cognition and your overall sense of well-being:

Stress Reduction
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Among the best-known mental benefits of exercise is stress reduction. Sweating up can help alleviate physical and mental stress. It also increases your body’s supply of norepinephrine, a chemical that can regulate your brain’s stress response. So if you ever feel like mental tension is getting the better of you, get up and start moving out there.
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Increased Production of Happy Hormones

Slogging through a few miles on your treadmill can be such a challenge, but it’s definitely worth the effort! As you might have heard in the past, exercise releases happy hormones called endorphins. Based on studies, exercise can even calm symptoms of clinically depressed individuals. Because of this, doctors recommend gym time for anyone suffering from depression or anxiety as long as long as they are physically capable. In certain cases, exercise can be equally effective as antidepressantpills.

No worries if you’re not exactly the gym buff type — you can get an instant happy buzz even if you work out for only 30 minutes twice or thrice weekly.

Self-Confidence Boost

Get on the treadmill to look and feel like a superstar. At the core, physical fitness can improve self-esteem and promote a positive self-image. Whatever your age, gender, size or weight, exercise can fast elevate your feelings of self-worth.
Loving the Great Outdoors

Your self-esteem can improve even more when you exercise in the great outdoors. Do some research and find an outdoor workout that matches your style, whether it’s hiking or jogging in the park or rock-climbing and so on. The Vitamin D you get from all that sun (please wear your sunscreen!) can keep those depressive symptoms at bay.

Maintaining Cognitive Ability

It’s not good news, but it’s true — aging makes our brains a little less sharp. Though exercise and a healthy diet can’t treat Alzheimer’s disease, it can help prevent or control cognitive decline, which starts after the age of 45 in most people. In people between the ages of 25 and 45, exercise boosts the levels of particular brain chemicals that prevent or delay the degeneration of the hippocampus, that area of the brain that controls learning and memory.

Anxiety Alleviation

Finally, a little Q & A: which works better at relieving anxiety — a 20-minute warm bubble bath or a 20-minute jog? The answer might surprise you. The warm and fuzzy chemicals released by your body during and after can be soothing. Who says exercise is just good for physical health?