Is exercise really good for you?
Exercise: shift the balance (Andy Hewitt DC)
Patients often ask me how to prevent recurrent episodes of back problems. The simple answer is exercise, essentially it is anything that is going to stimulate your musculoskeletal system in a positive way.
But first let’s start by going to the other end of the spectrum and looking at the physiological effects on the body of not exercising. In addition, to make it more interesting, let’s consider the effect of smoking as well as not exercising as this intensifies the lack of exercise. We all know smoking kills and I wouldn’t dream of telling anyone how to run their lives, but if you want to ruin every cell in your body, smoking is just about the most destructive thing you can do. Buerger’s disease, or Thromboangiitis Obliterans, is the result of the gradual narrowing or occlusion of ALL your small blood vessels so that each time you have a cigarette you’re effectively suffocating the body bit by bit not only of oxygen but also of blood. You’re slowly killing yourself, what a cheery thought. So much for looking cool with a fag! Ah well, enough of that negativity let’s look at the other end of the spectrum.
What about choosing life and health? Cells like being fed with the right things. Therefore, the best thing to do is get the good stuff in and the toxic rubbish out. The best way of doing this is by exercising. Increasing the blood flow to every cell in your body helps prevent and reduce the incidence of or improve most conditions. The extra-oxygenated blood brings nutrients to the body’s cells and removes the products of metabolism. This is the best way to improve cell health. The added benefit of all this exercise is improved muscle tone. This protects your joints, holding your body in its correct position. This in turn aids better blood flow, which in turn gives you more energy, which in turn… oh, you get the gist…
The body is fantastic: give it a chance, give it a little of the good stuff and it will do you proud. Of course, treat yourself to some coffee too, or whatever takes your fancy because you cannot be good all the time.