You probably already know that exercise is good for our bodies, but did you know that physical fitness and brain health are closely tied together? Physical fitness can improve your sleep, boost your mood, and help in dealing with stress, anxiety, depression, and more.
Physical Fitness and Brain Health
Fitness is not just about muscle size, figure shape, and aerobic capacity. Let’s make one thing crystal clear: exercise can improve your physical health, trim your big waistline, and so on. But did you know that people who exercise regularly claim to do so because exercise gives them a sense of well being?
They sleep better at night, have more enthusiastic energy throughout the day, sharper focus, better memory, and feel positive and relaxed about their lives and themselves. Physical fitness is a powerful medicine for many common mental health conditions/challenges.
No matter your fitness level or age, you can easily learn how to use exercise as a powerful tool to improve your energy and outlook, deal with mental health problems, or simply contribute to your brain health.
How Exercise Affects The Brain?
First things first, exercise affects our brain on multiple fronts. Exercise almost immediately increases heart rate, which means that our brain gets more oxygen. Besides that, it also contributes to the bodily release of many hormones that participate in helping of providing a nourishing environment for the healthy growth of brain cells.
What you might not realize yet is that with every lap you swim, every single step you take, you are contributing to your so-called “cognitive fitness”. Many recent studies suggest that any activities we do in order to improve our bodies also benefit our brain.
How Exercise Help Our Brain?
Physical fitness can benefit the brain in several ways, such as:
- Improving blood flow to the brain
- Promoting cardiovascular health
- Reducing inflammation
- Reducing levels of stress hormones
And guess what? Each and every single thing from this list can affect our cognition.
Exercise Is Not Only For Those with Mental Health Problems
Regular physical activity can boost your mood, mental well-being, and outlook, even if you are not suffering from some of the mental health problems.
Shaper thinking and memory: The same endorphins in charge of making you feel better also contribute to concentrating and mental sharpness.
Exercise also stimulates new brain cell growth.
Higher self esteem: Regular exercise is the greatest investment in your soul, body, and MIND. When it becomes a regular part (habit) of your life, it can enhance your sense of self worth and make you feel powerful, worth, and strong! You will feel better even when you meet the smallest exercise goals, that is, a sense of achievement!
Better sleep: Even ten minutes of exercise, whether in the afternoon or the morning, can regulate your sleep patterns.
More energy: Higher heart rate you get when you exercise can give you that feeling of get up and go!
You do not have to spend hours and hours in a gym or force yourself into monotonous, long workouts to start experiencing the health benefits of exercise. Just start with small goals and add proper nutrition supplements to your diet, and you will immediately feel better.