The U.S. News & The World Report reports five essential benefits of exercise. These benefits are true no matter the age group – for young or old, adult of for kids / children. They are true whether aerobic, on weight training regimens, running, jogging, whatever:

Primarily the benefits are shown to truly enhance your brainpower and lift your mood!

  1. Exercise for youthfulness! Exercise reverses the damaging effects of stress on the body. Exercise boosts levels of the soothing brain chemicals¬† (serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine.) It would seem that exercise may actually work on the cellular level to restore stress’s toll on your body’s aging processes.
  2. Exercise is a depression-killer! Sustained, sweat-inducing physical activity can seriously reduce the unwelcome symptoms of depression — and does it about as effectively as pharmaceutical antidepressants. And without the side effects!
  3. Exercise enhances your learning ability. It increases the level of brain chemicals called growth factors that help create new brain cells.
  4. Exercise boosts your self-esteem and improves your body image. You feel better about yourself! Even simply seeing the little physical fitness improvements, like a slimmer waist or being able to lift a little extra weight, can improve your self-esteem and body image. Who doesn’t enjoy the compliments we receive when others notice the little changes in our body?
  5. Exercise gives you that euphoric feeling! High-intensity exercise can leave you with a feeling of endorphin-boosted elation. Take your pick of running, biking, swimming or cross-training as fast as you can for 30 to 40 seconds (lifting your heartbeat) and then slow it down to a gentler pace for five minutes before sprinting again.
    That exertion will pay forward quickly in mood-boosting euphoria!

Further, a new study by researchers at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago have revealed impressive insights into why exercise is so good for your brain.

In short, it appears that exercise lowers the activity of bone-morphogenetic protein (BMP,) which reduces the production of new brain cells.

Also exercise increases Noggin, a brain protein that acts as a BMP antagonist. According to NYTimes.com:

“The more Noggin in your brain, the less BMP activity exists and the more stem cell divisions and neurogenesis [production of new brain cells] you experience.”

In the light of the above, get your body moving in your own personal physical fitness regime. The health and wellness benefits are too good to ignore!

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