Physical Exercise Is Essential for Mental Health, Too
At every stage in life, our physical health is tied inextricably to our mental health. When we feel good physically, we’re more likely to feel good mentally, as well.
And with dementia, depression, anxiety and loneliness higher among people later in life, this is one more reason to get or stay physically fit.
The World Health Organization has six tips for good mental health. And four of them are clearly connected to physical fitness.
1. Be active
2. Enjoy walks with your family and friends.
3. Get 8 hours of sleep every day.
4. Eat healthy.
5. Talk about your feelings with someone you trust.
6. Look for professional help if you need it.
What could be more clear that exercise is essential for our ongoing mental health?
We know from other sources, as well, that exercise is good for our brains. It boosts body chemicals that lower stress and improve mood, focus and energy. Exercise even builds up the capacity of parts of your brain associated with memory and learning, the hippocampus and the prefrontal cortex.
Strength and cardio training alike are linked to mental health. Professor Wendy Suzuki, an expert on brain science, says exercise can protect us from depression, Alzheimer’s and dementia.
“I am talking about the powerful effects of physical activity – that is, simply moving your body has immediate, long-lasting and protective benefits for your brain that can last for the rest of your life,” she says.
Join us – and start feeling and thinking better right away.