Physical Inactivity Leads to Chronic Pain

Via To Your Health

Here’s one more reason to exercise: Physical inactivity contributes to chronic musculo-skeletal pain, which affects the muscles, ligaments, tendons and bones. People with chronic conditions such as back pain, arthritis, or neck pain suffer daily through pain, fatigue, and even depression, and more people are falling victim every day. In fact, some experts have characterized the increasing prevalence of musculoskeletal conditions as an epidemic.

According to a 2008 study published in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, a connection exists between physical inactivity and chronic musculoskeletal complaints (MSCs). Study participants responded to questions regarding their physical activity 11 years prior to experiencing any MSCs. The researchers concluded, “In this large-scale population-based study, physical exercise was associated with lower prevalence of chronic MSCs, in particular chronic widespread MSCs [>15 days during the last month]. Furthermore, consistent medium activity level [120-179 min./week] was associated with [a] more than 50% lower prevalence of chronic widespread MSCs.” (If you’d like to review the abstract of the BMC study, visit: www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2474/9/159.)

There you go – the latest in an ever-growing list of reasons to make exercise a part of your weekly routine. And remember, a consistent, balanced fitness program of cardio, muscle strengthening and stretching will do more than help in the prevention of chronic pain; it could also help prevent other serious conditions such as heart disease and hypertension.

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30 Minutes a Day May Keep Strokes Away

Via To Your Health

As little as half an hour a day of moderate exercise may reduce your risk of suffering a stroke, say researchers at the University of South Carolina’s Prevention Research Center. That ‘s good news because stroke is the nation’s third leading cause of death.

 It occurs when blood flow to the brain is stopped when a blood vessel is blocked by a clot or bursts. 

The research was presented recently at the International Stroke Conference in New Orleans. Researchers studied more than 61,000 adults at the Cooper Aerobics Center in Dallas. After taking an initial treadmill test to assess fitness, study participants periodically answered health surveys. The study divided subjects into four levels of fitness and then looked at how many of them suffered strokes, following them for an average of 18 years. Overall, there were 863 stroke events during the study: 692 in men and 171 in women. Read more of this post

Stroke risk declines with greater number of healthy lifestyle factors

 Reprinted with permission of Life Extension

The November 14, 2011 issue of the Archives of Internal Medicine reports the outcome of a study which concluded that the greater number of healthy lifestyle factors one has, the more protection one gains against stroke. Stroke is a major cause of death worldwide, and its impact on survivors can be devastating.

Gang Hu, MD, PhD of Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and colleagues analyzed data from 17,287 men and 19,399 women without a history of heart disease or stroke who participated in surveys conducted in Finland in 1982, 1987, 1992, 1997 and 2002. Questionnaire responses provided information on medical history, physical activity levels, smoking habits, alcohol consumption, diet and other factors. Participants were followed through 2007, during which 1,167 ischemic strokes and 311 hemorrhagic strokes occurred.

The five healthy lifestyle factors evaluated in the study included being a lifelong nonsmoker, having a body mass index of less than 25, engaging in moderate to high levels of physical activity, consuming vegetables at least three times per week and having light to moderate weekly intake of alcohol. Compared to the risk of stroke experienced by those having one or no healthy factors, having two, three, four and five factors was associated with a 34, 43, 49 and 67 percent adjusted reduction. When stroke was analyzed according to type, having two, three, four and five factors was associated with a 33, 40, 50 and 70 percent lower risk of ischemic stroke and a 37, 51, 51 and 60 percent decreased risk of hemorrhagic stroke. These inverse associations were present in both younger and older participations and among those with and without high blood pressure or a history of diabetes.

“Our study demonstrates a graded inverse association between the number of healthy lifestyle factors and the risks of total, ischemic, and hemorrhagic stroke in both men and women,” the authors conclude. “Our findings suggest the important role of promoting a healthy lifestyle in the primary prevention of both ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke.”

Gym Class Strengthens Kids’ Brains As Well As Bodies

via Organic Gardening

As public schools across America trim their budgets, one of the first casualties is gym class. Sadly, eliminating gym classes not only cuts into children’s physical fitness, it diminishes their intellectual performance as well. Research from the California Department of Education reveals that children who are more fit perform twice as well on academic tests as their unfit peers. And a panel of researchers who conducted a massive review of over 850 studies on the effects of physical activity on school-age children corroborates those findings. The researchers found that 30 to 45 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise 3 to 5 days a week enhanced memory, concentration, mood, classroom behavior, self-concept, and academic performance in the kids. The panel recommended at least one hour a day of moderate to vigorous exercise to optimize children’s cognitive development, as well as physical health. Read more of this post

Blast the Fat!

via To Your Health

Your body is similar to your car. You put fuel in your car so that it will take you to your destination. Your body does the same, but it uses a few different types of fuel. It can burn sugar (carbs), it can burn fat, and if it doesn’t have any excess sugar or fat, it can actually burn muscle tissue (which we want to minimize as much as possible). How much you burn of either type of fuel depends on your exercise methods and habits such as what you eat before you head to the gym. For now, let’s focus mainly on different exercises that will help you burn fat. But know that your eating habits have a direct effect on fat burning or lack of.

A great way to burn fat and lots of calories is through interval (circuit) training. Interval training breaks up the work with periods of rest. Not only does interval training allow you to improve your fitness quickly; it is also more effective than continuous exercise for burning lots of calories during exercise and increasing your after workout metabolic rate. Studies have shown that “after burn” and interval training (circuit) can last up to 36 hours after. (This basically means you are still burning calories at a higher rate when you are finished than normal).

Here are some fantastic interval training exercises that will help you burn calories and lose weight: Read more of this post

Sitting Is Killing You

Sitting is Killing You
Via: Medical Billing And Coding