Active living and sufficient physical activity provide many long-term health benefits that are necessary for living well – an important pillar in maintaining health. According to the U.S. department of Health & Human Services, regular physical activity and produce long-term health benefits, including:
· Control weight
· Make your muscles stronger
· Promote strong bone, muscle, and joint development
· Build overall strength and endurance
· Improve sleep
· Relieve stress
Regular physical activity also increases your chances of living longer, as it helps to prevent chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, and stroke (the three-leading health-related causes of death). In fact, when a person is not physically active, they are at more risk for high blood pressure, stroke, type 2 diabetes, heart disease and cancer!
The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans recommends 30 minutes of physical activity a day for adults at least five days a week. For many, finding the time to stay active on top of the regular demands of the day is difficult – and the COVID-19 pandemic means that many of us are at home and sitting down more than we usually do.
World Health Organization (WHO) warns that this is the time for us to be as active as possible, and that is why the WHO has launched the #BeActive campaign. In order to #BeActive and remain #HealthyAtHome consider the following suggestions along with any other form of recreation to stay healthy at home:
Taking some online exercise classes
Playing active video games
Practising muscle strength and balance training.
There are so many health benefits to being active for people of all ages, backgrounds and abilities. Regular physical activity benefits both the body and mind, and it can help give our days a routine and be a way to stay in contact with family and friends. It’s also good for our mental health - reducing the risk of depression, cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia - and improve overall feelings.
Take the first step to getting active today! If you haven't been active in a while, start slowly and build up.
Remember that every little bit counts. Remember: some physical activity is better than none and its never too late to start.