Exercise helps your mental health too!
Do you have problems concentrating; walk into a room and forget what you were doing? Is your nickname around the house “Forgetful Jones?” Well, put on your walking shoes and get going! Yea that’s right! Scientists are now linking increased mental performance to weight loss!
Experts now conclude exercise changes the molecular performance of your brain! There is increasing evidence indicating that exercise is effective in improving your mental well being, largely through enhanced mood and self-perceptions, as well as increased mental abilities. It is even thought that exercise and weight loss have a counteractive effect on clinical depression and anxiety. Experts already know exercise reduces illness and mortality from coronary heart disease, diabetes, obesity and some cancers. So, what are you waiting for? With all of these benefits let’s get started!
A recent study conducted on older fit and unfit adults showed significant proof that fit adults were more alert, had quicker reaction times, and more fluidity than unfit older adults (Fox, 1999). Another study completed over a 6-month period involving a group that engaged in moderate walking not only became more physically fit, but also showed major enhancements in their decision-making processes. The adults’ performance in switching from task to task, stopping and careful attention tasks were rated well above the adults who only stretched and toned (R. J. Joseph et al., 2011).
Exercise improves our brains’ ability to focus on one individual task at a time, therefore conditioning your brain to be less overwhelmed when faced with multi-tasking – which we all do! Exercise also increases blood flow to your brain, therefore increasing the rate in which you work! When you are working out, your brain secretes opiates, which also control vital roles such as hunger, thirst, mood control, immune response, and other processes (Canadian Institute of Health Research). So, working out is like a natural drug – that improves cognitive abilities as well as physical performance!
Check out Aqua Jog Your Way to Fit this Summer! And get on your way to becoming physically fit and mentally fit! You can do it!
Canadian Institute of Health Research
Fox, K. R. (1999). The influence of physical activity on mental well-being. Public Health Nutrition, 2(3a), 411-418.
Joseph, R.J. et al. (2011). The neurocognitive connection between physical activity and eating behavior. Obesity Reviews.