Seven Reasons to be Physically Active

Lisa Nelson, RD, LN Health Pro
  • Physical activity, especially aerobic exercise, is beneficial for your cardiovascular system.


    Here are 7 reasons to add physical activity to your daily routine starting today:


    1. Lowers LDL cholesterol


    Being physically activity daily for 30 minutes, such as a 30 minute walk, has been linked to reduce LDL cholesterol levels in both men and women.


    2. Reduce risk for diabetes


    Diagnosis of diabetes is on the rise, especially in children. Protect yourself (and your children) from developing diabetes by being active a minimum of 150 minutes each week.


    3. Decrease risk for breast and colon cancer

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    A study has found a 35% reduced risk of getting breast cancer in women who are regularly active. Physical activity also increases survival rate in women diagnosed with breast cancer. The Harvard Nurses' Health Study shows walking three to five hours each week to decrease risk of death 50 percent. Physical activity has also been linked to reduced risk for colon and rectal cancers.


    4. Increase your life span


    Individuals who stay in shape as they age live longer, particularly when evaluating heart disease risk. An Archives of Internal Medicine study showed a workout a day may add ~4 years to your life. A sample from the Framingham Heart Study found individuals who walked 30 minutes 5 days a week lived 1.3 to 1.5 years longer than sedentary individuals. Boost your exercise intensity and studies show you may add 3.5 to 3.7 years to your lifespan.


    5. Improve your quality of life as you age


    Muscle mass declines as a normal part of aging. Starting at about the age of 30, your metabolism decreases ~2% every 10 years. This decrease is linked to a reduction in muscle mass. Lack of strength and a poor fitness level as you age equates to frailty and loss of independence.


    6. Keep your mind sharp


    Individuals who engage in physical activity a minimum of twice week from midlife onward reduced their risk of developing dementia 50% and a 60% reduced risk of developing Alzheimer's disease compared to those who were inactive.


    7. Save money


    Drastically cut your medical bills by being physically active! A 19 year study of 7,000 men found that physically fit men cut their medical bills 46% compared to sedentary men. These men also reduced their risk of being hospitalized by 42%.


    Be sure to sign up for the free e-course How to Lower Cholesterol in 8 Simple Steps at


Published On: August 30, 2010