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John A. Mays, MSEd
De-stress With Regular Exercise
Fitness Together

De-stress With Regular Exercise

Many people feel that they are too stressed or don’t have the time or energy for regular exercise. But, here’s how exercise can relieve depression and mood disorders?

Experts have known that exercise enhances the action of endorphins, chemicals that circulate throughout the body. Endorphins improve natural immunity and reduce the perception of pain. They may also serve to improve mood. Another theory is that exercise stimulates the neurotransmitter nor-epinephrine, which may directly improve mood.

Besides lifting your mood, regular exercise offers other health benefits, such as lowering blood pressure, protecting against heart disease and cancer, and boosting overall self-esteem. How often or intensely you need to exercise to alleviate depression is not clear, but for general health, experts advise getting half an hour to an hour of moderate exercise, such as walking or lifting weights, on all or most days of the week.

If you only have time for one day a week in the beginning, that’s a great start that leads to the opportunity to increase later. Starting is the key to building and developing a consistent habit.

Regular exercise has been proven to

  • Reduce perception of stress on mind and body
  • Reduce feelings of anxiety and stress
  • Boost self-esteem/self-perception
  • Improve quality of sleep

Exercise also has these added health benefits

  • It strengthens your heart.
  • It increases energy levels.
  • It lowers blood pressure.
  • It improves muscle tone and strength.
  • It strengthens and builds bones.
  • It helps reduce body fat.
  • It makes you look fit and healthy.
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