The Therapy Room: Exercise: Become Stronger, Smarter and Younger

Posted on 16 November 2017 by LeslieM

Why do Americans spend billions of dollars annually on elixirs and quick fixes to look better? Does any medicine exist today that can make us stronger, smarter and younger? The miracle medicine that truly works and can provide longevity, health and wellness is EXERCISE.

Our country is trying to untangle and reassemble the current healthcare system into one that works. There are many changes that must take place and I believe more emphasis must be placed on the many health benefits of exercise — for all ages!

The consequences of a sedentary lifestyle have been well studied and researched. People who do not or rarely exercise are at risk for various cancers, heart disease, chronic diseases, depression, and other mental and physical health issues. The National Institutes of Health recently launched a study aimed at what exactly happens to a human body that moves. The goal is to prove that exercise is the ultimate medicine.

Not every type of exercise works for every person. An effective way to make exercise more desirable is to incorporate a goal-orientated approach. I do this in my psychotherapy private practice. I promote brief therapy with specific goals spelled out clearly and carried forward for each of my patients. Achieving mental and physical health goals motivates my patients to move forward and achieve their goals.

Here are a few reasons why you should exercise:

Doing any exercise 3-4 times a week for 20-30 minutes will increase your energy and stamina.

Walking daily and monitoring your steps using a fitness tracking device will improve your health. Any number over zero is improvement, but 7,000-10,000 steps a day will help reduce visits to the doctor.

Exercising will ease symptoms of many chronic conditions. Consider meeting with a professional trainer to build strength and endurance and to reduce pain by increasing blood flow and releasing endorphins — those feel good brain chemicals.

Exercising will help you to lose weight. You will become conscious of the nutritional content and portion size of the food you eat. Strength training and cardiovascular exercises will ultimately help you to attain the body and overall health you desire.

Exercising reduces anxiety and depression. Move your body and do something different because sitting and watching television, or using devices for long periods of time can lead to stress. Take a walk, swim in the ocean, consider a spin or yoga class. Just move your body and your thinking will improve!

The strongest evidence that exercise is key to being youthful is that studies consistently show that people who exercise regularly have fewer strokes, fewer heart attacks and live longer than those who stay put. Your body in motion slows down the acceleration of aging at the cellular level. Why not consider exercising to feel and look better and stronger? Make your move today — change is possible!

Dr. Julia Breur is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist with a private clinical psychotherapy practice in Boca Raton. For more information, visit www.drjuliabreur.com.

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