While most people are aware of the general health benefits associated with regular exercise, fewer people are familiar with the true physiological benefits of exercise. In this guide, we’re going to highlight some of the most important physiological benefits that exercise has to offer, so you’ll soon understand why exercise is more than just ‘burning off a few excess calories’. With this in mind, let’s take a closer look at these key benefits.

1 – Improved heart health

If you’re concerned about the risks of heart disease, then regular physical exercise is one of the best activities you could ever indulge in. Over recent years, multiple studies have shown how exercise can boost your high-density lipoprotein (commonly known as ‘good cholesterol’) while reducing dangerous triglyceride levels.

2 – More energy and endurance

It may sound counterintuitive to learn that vigorous exercise actually gives you more energy rather than less – but it’s the truth according to both modern research and anecdotal experience. By exercising regularly, your body adapts itself to allow for faster oxygen delivery, as well as creating greater ‘bandwidth’ for vital nutrients to reach every cell in your body.

Ultimately, this makes your heart and lungs far more efficient, and gives you more energy throughout the day, regardless of your activity.

3 – Greater brain function

The rush of neurotransmitters released both during and after exercise provide a range of health benefits – one of them being improved brain function, especially for older individuals. Studies show greater memory recall, reduced stress response, and better overall ‘mood’ – all of which can be attributed to regular physical activity.

4 – Improved sleep quality

Regular exercise can be real lifesaver for people who suffer with insomnia. By engaging in physical activity at some point during the day, your body is able to relax easier when it comes time to sleep – and it’s also believed that this activity can increase the release of your body’s natural sleep hormone, melatonin.

Ultimately, this boost of melatonin means you can sleep better – by falling asleep faster, as well as experiencing fewer interruptions throughout the night.

5 – Better skin tone

One of the most surprising physiological benefits of exercise is better skin tone, with fewer breakouts, and even a reduction of acne for people who are prone to this condition. Exercise causes a significant circulation boost, which allows a rush of invigorating nutrients to enter your skin – and the increased action of your sweat pores help to cleanse and detoxify the surface layers of your skin, too.

6 – Stronger immune system

Several studies have revealed that people who regularly exercise tend to have stronger immune systems, as well as suffer from fewer illnesses throughout their lives. It’s believed that the release of toxins caused by exercise helps to improve your resistance to disease and infection, as well as reduce the impact of free radicals within each cell of your body.

7 – Lower blood pressure

High blood pressure is often referred to as the ‘silent killer’ because it rarely shows noticeable symptoms, yet can still cause irreparable damage to your body. Fortunately, one of the key physiological benefits of exercise is lower blood pressure, which helps to protect you from the life-threatening effects of elevated blood pressure.

8 – Increased bone density

As you grow older the loss of bone density is inevitable, which is why older people can often suffer painful fractures from even the slightest stumble. However, research has conclusively demonstrated that regular resistance training helps to restore bone density by a surprising amount. In fact, regular exercise can usually return your bone density levels to the equivalent of a person in their twenties!

9 – An efficient digestive system

Another key benefit of regular exercise is the improvement of your digestive system. There’s no denying that the effects of modern living can cause havoc with your natural rhythms, and your digestive system is one of the first things to suffer.

However, a regular exercise habit can promote regular bowel movements, and even reduce your risk of developing bowel cancer and other digestive-related illnesses.

10 – Overcome addiction

Many people around the world struggle with addiction on a daily basis – and regardless of whether that’s an addiction to drugs, alcohol, or even food – there’s no denying that regular physical exercise has a lot to offer for any recovering addict.

One of the key mechanisms behind this is dopamine, which is often referred to as the brain’s ‘reward chemical’ because it’s released in response to any pleasurable activity. Because of this, it’s all too easy to become addicted to anything that’s pleasurable, such as alcohol, sex, food, and even video games.

Thankfully, physical exercise can release a tremendous amount of dopamine, which causes a much healthier ‘addiction response’ for many people, while also countering many withdrawal symptoms associated with addiction.

Conclusion

Overall, it’s safe to say the physiological benefits of exercise are many, and while we’ve covered several of the most important ones, there are equally many others – such as increased relaxation, motivation, self-confidence, and more. So if you’re looking for some inspiration to begin a regular exercise routine, there’s never been a better time to start.

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