5 Key Benefits for Staying Active as You Age : American adults are not exercising enough. According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control, less than one-quarter of adults get enough exercise.
This percentage drops even lower as Americans grow older. Opting not to exercise is a mistake for several different reasons. Perhaps most significant is that exercise is a proven way to extend your life expectancy.
Read on to learn why you should stay active as you get older. Explore 5 key benefits of staying active and how it promotes overall health.
Increase Your Life Expectancy
The most impactful benefit of staying active is increasing your life expectancy. In fact, the more often you exercise, the greater the life expectancy boost.
According to Harvard University research, just 15 minutes of exercise per day can increase life expectancy. For starters, exercise reduces the likelihood of deathly threats like heart disease. It also slows the aging process at a cellular level.
Diabetes is the type of disease that reduces your quality of life. The good news is that exercise can help you control diabetes.
Despite not having insulin to regulate it, routine exercise reduces the amount of glucose in your blood. This is because your muscles are using glucose while you exercise. In the long run, exercise pushes off more severe symptoms of diabetes like nerve pain and kidney disease.
Far too many Americans are struggling with depression. In fact, roughly 10 percent of the adult population has depression.
Instead of turning to medicine, exercise can effectively treat depression in aging adults. When you exercise, the body releases endorphins and neurotrophic proteins.
Endorphins are a chemical that temporarily make you feel good. In the long run, the released proteins result in the growth of new nerve cells and connections. This increase in brain function also makes you feel good and relieves depression.
Regular exercise is a certain method for building strength. This added strength and conditioning pays dividends as you grow older.
First, it allows you to continue living at a faster pace. You are more likely to keep up with children and grandchildren.
Exercise also helps you maintain balance and avoid falls. It maintains bone density at healthy levels which helps you avoid fractures and strains.
As you get older, it seems harder to maintain personal relationships. Friends move away or are limited by age.
Joining a gym or a running club can result in new friendships. You will meet new people and see them on a regular basis. These friendships, in turn, lead to a more fulfilling life and also relieve depression.
Why You Should Stay Active: A Recap
There are so many health reasons to stay active and exercise. Regular exercise allows you to live a longer and more fulfilling life.
It reduces the risk of heart disease and controls diabetes. Perhaps most important is that staying active helps you stave off depression and live a happy life.
If you enjoyed this article about why to stay active, check out our fitness blog for more great content.
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