11 health benefits of regular exercise


In a world full of fitness fads, there exists a powerful way that promises not just physical vitality but holistic well-being – regular exercise. The simplest and best way to keep all your health woes at bay. Imagine this – one single thing can awaken your muscles from a slumber, help your mind be at peace, and improve your overall well-being. Whether you’re a fitness guru or just someone looking for ways to get fit, regular exercise is your best friend. Having said that, let’s understand why regular exercise is important and its benefits.

What are the health benefits of regular exercise?

Health Shots asked fitness trainer Yash Agarwal to understand the benefits of regular exercise that you need to know:

1. Promotes heart health

Being physically active is crucial to promote heart health. A study published in Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine found that exercise prevents both the onset and development of heart disease. It has also been found that regular exercise helps improve the heart’s ability to pump blood and helps strengthen it. Agarwal adds that it helps lower blood pressure levels and cholesterol levels, both of which are risk factors for developing cardiovascular disease.

exercise benefits
Regular exercise can help heart attacks at bay. Image courtesy: Adobe stock

2. Helps in weight management

Regular exercise not only helps you shed the extra kilos but fills your body with energy, and confidence and boosts overall health. The fitness expert says that it helps lose weight by burning calories, building lean muscle, and increasing metabolism. A study published in the Journal Progress in Cardiovascular Diseases found that people who exercised more than 200 per week than those who exercised for less time.

3. Boosts mental health

Have you been feeling depressed? Have you been anxious lately? A study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry found that regular exercise helps reduce anxiety, and depression and improve mood by improving self-esteem and cognitive function. It does so by releasing endorphins, which promote feelings of happiness and reduce stress.

4. Strengthens bones and joints

Exercise is important to build and maintain strong muscles and bones. According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, regular exercise helps strengthen bones in children and adults, helping reduce the risk of diseases like osteoporosis. It is also believed to strengthen your muscles and decrease the risk of injuries.

5. Better sleep

Agarwal says that regular exercise can also enhance sleep quality and even help with problems insomnia. Regular exercise can have moderate to strong positive effects on overall sleep quality, according to a study published in the Journal of Advances in Preventive Medicine.

exercise benefits for sleep
Regular exercise induces sleep. Image courtesy: Freepik

6. Helps manage blood sugar levels

High levels of blood sugar can be damaging to your health and can lead to problems like diabetes. It can even harden your blood vessels and increase the risk of atherosclerosis – a buildup of cholesterol, fats, and other substances in artery walls that can block blood flow. The fitness expert says that one of the many benefits of regular exercise is managing blood sugar levels. Even studies have found the positive effects of exercise on blood sugar levels.

7. Improves cognitive function

Exercise helps boost memory and cognitive function, says the expert. In fact, studies such as one published in Frontiers in Psychology found that regular exercise benefits both cognitive functioning and well-being.

8. Strengthens immunity

It is crucial to boost your immune system during such times as it reduces your chances of likelihood of illness. As per a study published in the Journal of Sport and Health Science, regular exercise helps improve immune regulation, which can help delay the onset of age-related dysfunction.

9. Good for digestive health

When you exercise regularly, the blood flow to the muscles in the digestive system increases, which aids digestion and even reduces the risk of constipation. So, the next time you face gut issues, you know what you’ve to do!

10. Increases longevity

Exercise has been proven to extend lives as well. Agarwal also points out that regular exercise has been associated with a longer, healthier lifespan. As per the analysis published in the Journal of Aging Research, eight different cohorts suggest that regular physical activity has been associated with increased life expectancy.

exercise benefits
Exercising regularly can improve longevity! Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

11. Reduces cancer risk

Being physically active reduces cancer risk of several types, as per a study published in the Medicinal Science Sports Exercise. However, it doesn’t guarantee a free pass, you have to follow a holistic lifestyle to live a healthy and disease-free life.

Keep in mind!

Regular exercise is a good way to stay healthy, however, it’s not a sure-shot way to live a disease-free life. The benefits depend on the type and intensity of exercise, as well as individual factors. It is important to consult your healthcare provider before making any changes in your lifestyle, especially if you have health concerns.

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