August 10, 2009 | David F. Coppedge

Don’t Just Sit There; Do Something

Inactive people have the most health problems.  That’s why the American Psychological Association is warning that sedentary lives can be deadly, according to Science Daily.  A speaker at an APA convention called physical inactivity “the biggest public health problem of the 21st century.”
    Some 25-35% of adult Americans – 40 to 50 million people – do not get any serious exercise.  This is “doubling their risk of developing numerous health conditions compared with those who are even moderately active and fit,” Dr. Steven Blair said.  In a longitudinal study of 40,842 persons, poor physical fitness was implicated in 16 percent of deaths that could have been delayed by walking 30 minutes per day.  Another article on Science Daily also showed that physical exercise can help keep the elderly out of the hospital.
    Technology has “largely engineered the need for physical activity out of the daily lives of most people in industrialized societies,” he noted.  People should realize that physical exercise not only helps the body – it’s good for the mind as well.  “Blair also highlighted the benefits of exercise on the mind, referring to recent emerging evidence that activity delays the mind’s decline and is good for brain health overall.”
    “The message should be simple, he said: Doing something is better than doing nothing, and doing more is better than doing less, at least up to a point.”

Most of us probably don’t come anywhere near that point.  Wherever that point is for your body type, you should get closer to it.  With your doctor’s supervision, make some changes to up your activity level.  Your body was made to thrive in the outdoor environment for which it was created.  It goes with the territory.  Walking hills and valleys keeps those systems humming.

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Categories: Health, Human Body

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