Inactivity and the Brain Part 2


2014-0822 Brain EpicenterThe article in this post was written by Bell Beth Cooper for the blog Buffer Social. Her article is a little lengthy for me, and possibly a little long for you too. I took the liberty of dividing the full article into a few manageable parts. I enjoyed reading the article, and I hope you will too. I decided to share the article because it delivers an important message and supports the message with facts. Although the message is a bit technical in a few places, the overall message is quite valuable.

Article written by Belle Beth Cooper

How exercise is beneficial – more so than ever

Supposing you’re as concerned as I am about sitting around all day now, let’s have a look at some of the actual benefits of being active, besides simply avoiding the troubles of inactivity.

1. Exercise improves mental health

Exercise has been shown to improve mental health, especially in those suffering from depression or anxiety disorders. So far, the most impressive results have occurred in people who are mostly sedentary and take up a regular exercise routine. Some studies have also found that a difference is more clear in women and in people over the age of forty.

The results have included better mood, better overall well-being and fewer (or lower) symptoms of depression or anxiety.

2. Exercise decreases disease risk

Across several studies evidence has piled together to prove that regular physical activity is effective in preventing several different chronic diseases, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, cancer, hypertension, obesity and osteoporosis. There has also been some research indicating that exercise can reduce the risk of strokes.

3. Regular exercise can improve sleep

A study of people with insomnia showed that after four months of regular exercise, the participants were sleeping and average of 45 minutes longer per night. The results didn’t show that participants necessarily slept better the night after they exercised, but long-term, the study proved how effective regular activity can be in treating insomnia.

There have been quite a few studies into the benefits of exercise on sleep, many of them focusing on those with sleep complaints or disorders, who find regular exercise can improve overall sleep quality.

It’s also been found to help those without sleep troubles, though. Regular exercisers are more likely to self-report better sleep over the same amount of time as those who have mostly sedentary lifestyles.


Click here to read another Beyond Injury post.

Thanks to Lee Huff for sharing the article; researchers at Wayne State University School of Medicine for conducting the study; Belle Beth Cooper for summarizing the study in her article; Buffer Social for committing its resources to publishing the article; Google for helping me find the article; and all the people who, directly or indirectly, made it possible for me to include the picture and text I used in this post.


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