College of DuPage Nursing Student Haiyan GAO wrote for Healthy Lombard that it is well known that exercise is good for our health mentally and physically, but how many actually engage in exercise to see the benefits for themselves? What is exercise? It may be defined as anybody movement one makes in their daily life. Exercise is important for everyone for several reasons that will be described below.
According to the book, Anatomy and Physiology is written by Tortora and Derrickson (2017) exercise can produce stress which helps bone tissue to become stronger through the increased deposition of mineral salts and production of collagen fibers by osteoblasts. As a result, they grow and the breakdown of bone is reduced. As people age, they tend to lose muscle mass and function, which can lead to injuries and disabilities. Also, exercise helps build bone density in youth in addition to preventing osteoporosis later in life. Exercise may improve brain health and memory also, by increasing heart rate and accelerating blood flow and oxygenation to the brain. Heidi Goldman (2014) describes the benefits from exercise as due to stimulation of hormone production that may improve the growth of brain cells. Exercise has been found to increase the size of the hippocampus, a portion of the brain involved in memory and learning, which also increases mental function in older adults.
Exercise has been especially beneficial for the retention of academic content and attention span. Overall, exercise is beneficial for physical and mental health. It helps to enhance brain health and memory, and plays a role in building and maintaining strong muscles and bones, keeps the body in a good shape, and enhances immune system function, preventing illness. With all the benefits of exercise, it is surprising more people do not actively engage in regular exercise, but there is no time like the present.
Goldman, H. (2014) Regular exercise changes the brain to improve memory, thinking skills.
Tortora, J, and Derrickson,B. (2017) Principles of Anatomy & Physiology, 15th edition.