Couch potatoes everywhere should take heed! A lack of exercise and sedentariness could be harmful to the brain.
Physical inactivity appears to be directly linked to declining mental health. In fact, the results of a British study demonstrate that a lack of physical exercise increases the risk of dementia and depression.
Hence, people who are not physically active regularly have a 30% elevated risk of suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. It is not yet clear what the protective effect of physical exercise can actually be attributed to. Some suggest the benefits of exercise on the vascular system, or the release of chemical transmitters in the brain could be responsible for this protective effect.
Currently, approximately two thirds of all Canadians are not sufficiently active. For children, adults and senior citizens alike, it is recommended we practice a moderate physical activity for close to one hour per day, most days of the week, to reap the full benefits of physical exercise.
It is widely known that physical activity is essential to mental health: it contributes in increasing self-esteem, elevating one’s general mood, managing stress and sleeping better. In addition, not only does practicing sports contribute in preventing depression, it is also a very useful complement in treating the disease.
Eating a healthy diet and performing regular physical exercise play a major role in the prevention of numerous chronic diseases that intensify as we age. Making a habit of being more physically active today will increase our chances of living a happy and healthy life well into old age. Go ahead and get moving!