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Simply Fit, by Cindy Haskin-Popp, will help you make physical activity a part of everyday life. The health benefits of regular exercise and overall daily physical activity will be discussed. Fun, practical and easy-to-follow tips on an exercise program will be shared, as will the most current research. Fitness tips for families and seniors, on fitness centers and on buying proper and affordable equipment will be regularly given. 

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Exercise - Why it is Effective in the Prevention, Management, and Treatment of Chronic Disease

I just returned from listening to the keynote lecture held at ACSM's 57th Annual Meeting and Inaugural World Congress on Exercise is Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland.  The keynote lecturer was Bente Klarlund Pedersen, DMSC from The Centre of Inflammation and Metabolism, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, Denmark.  She discussed "Exercise - Why does it Work?".

Pedersen presented some interesting facts as to why "Exercise is Medicine."  They are as follows:

  • Inactive individuals have a life expectancy that is 5 years shorter than their active counterparts.
  • Social and environmental factors significantly influence health.  Individuals who have a friend that becomes obese have an increased risk by 171% of becoming obese themselves. Interestingly, that increased risk is only 40% when a sibling becomes obese. 
  • Obesity plays a role in chronic inflammation.  The presence of persistent chronic inflammation is associated with the development of chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and Alzheimer's disease.
  • Exercise induces anti-inflammatory effects.
  • Exercise is effective in the prevention, management, and treatment of colon cancer, breast cancer, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, dementia, and depression.
  • Obesity and physical inactivity have environmental consequences.  The increased consumption of food leads to an increase in production and manufacturing of food, thus increasing greenhouse emissions.  Using a car to get to work, rather than riding a bicycle or walking, contributes to transportation emissions.
  • "People change their behavior when a change in context compels them to."
A powerful point that Bente Klarlund Pedersen, DMSC raised that I would like to end this post on is: "Those individuals who say they do not have the time to exercise, will later have to find the time for disease."

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