How Can Exercise Help You Manage Chronic Disease?

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In the United States, chronic disease is the number one cause of disability and death amongst citizens.

About half of all Americans were suffering from at least one chronic disease in 2012. In 2014, 7 out of the top 10 causes of death had been identified as chronic conditions.

Fortunately, health experts agree that you can do one thing to not only lower your risk of suffering from a chronic disease, but also manage a chronic disease you already have.

The secret? Physical exercise.

High cholesterol, high blood pressure, persistent pain, inflammation–all of those are things that can be managed with increased physical fitness.

As one specific example, participating in aerobic exercise can prevent heart disease.

If you already have heart problems, moderate intensity can help stop it from becoming more serious.

On the other hand, strength training will build muscle and, in turn, promote health joints.

This will work to preserve mobility and function for healthy people as they get older.

If you suffer from arthritis or type 2 diabetes, however, it can help decrease pain and improve glucose control.

Flexibility exercises can also do wonders for improving range of motion and reducing the potential of a fall for every body.

Now, the secret is to start slow with any new exercise program.

Figure out what chronic conditions you are suffering from or most at risk for and then use that knowledge to help you design an appropriate workout program that will help bring you better health.

Once you decide on a workout program that you’d like to start, move forward slowly at a comfortable pace.

The biggest mistake anyone can make when starting a new exercise program is failing to address their current fitness and activity levels.

This leads to them jumping into a program that is simply going to put too much physical strain on them, increasing their risk of energy and quickly dwindling their motivation to continue.

Instead, figure out where you’re at and start slowly.

Push yourself a bit harder each day as you get stronger and increase your endurance.

In a matter of weeks, you’ll be amazed at just how far you have come versus trying to go too far from the start and ending up injuring or hurting yourself–that will only slow down your physical fitness progress and hinder your health.

With the right level of physical activity, you can prevent and manage a range of chronic conditions.

Ask your doctor what they suggest for you.

How Much Exercise Do You Need As You Age?

Did you know that the muscle strength you build up in your 20s can stay with you far into your golden years?

Although many younger people feel that they can get away with eating junk and vegging out since it doesn’t have an immediate effect on their health, the long-term impact is much more detrimental than you have ever imagined.

On the other hand, if you choose to get active and be healthy in your 20s and beyond, that’s something that can have a tremendously positive impact on your life as a whole.

For instance, participating in 3-5 hours of cardio per week cuts your risk of colon cancer down by 30% to 40%.

For women, four or more hours of exercise each week can reduce your risk of breast cancer by 60%.

In your 20s, you should aim for no less than two to three hours of exercise each and every week, whether it’s at the gym or while you’re outside having fun.

Lifting weights, pushups, and lunges are the primary full-body moves you should focus on.

In your 30s, it’s time to diversify the muscles groups you’ve been working.

Maybe you got really good at something in your 20s, but the issue is that repeating the same activity exclusively and all the time can overwork those muscles.

In your 30s, focus on a mix of upper and lower body exercises.

In your 40s, you have the chance to fight belly fat and preserve your strength by continuing an active lifestyle.

Many men stop weight lifting at this age, but in fact, this is exactly when you should ramp it up.

Consistent exercise is important.

In your 50s, you need to focus on adapting your exercise plan to work around the aches and pains that naturally come along with aging.

Pilates, yoga, and aerobics are great ways to work out without going too hard on your body.

In your 60s, it’s important that you continue regular exercise in order to offset chronic disease, such as diabetes and heart problems.

It will also keep your bones strong so, in case you fall, you’re at a lowered risk for broken bones or injury.

Alternate between upper and lower body and try for water aerobics and light weight lifting.

In your 70s, you’ll be repeating the exercises from earlier in your life but they’ll be done around a chair for stability.

It’s important that you continue to uphold your active lifestyle in your 70s and beyond.

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