One of the simplest and most effective ways to cut the risk of cardiovascular disease, bring down your blood glucose levels, reduce the visible effects of ageing and improve your overall health and well-being is physical fitness and exercise. Yet, in our increasingly sedentary world, where almost every essential task can be performed online, from the driver’s seat, or with a phone call, exercising and being physically fit can be a tough challenge to work into your everyday routine.
In reality, everyone should exercise, yet surveys show that less than 30% of the Australian adult population gets the recommended thirty minutes of daily physical activity, and 25% are not active at all.
Inactivity is thought to be one of the key reasons for the surge of type 2 diabetes in Australia because inactivity and obesity promote insulin resistance and other factors that trigger other kinds of diseases.
The good news is that it is never too late to get moving, and exercise is one of the easiest ways to start controlling the onset of any kind of disease. For people who are already candidates for some serious diseases like diabetes and heart failure, exercise and physical fitness can improve the condition of some parts of the body like insulin sensitivity, lower the risk of heart disease, and promote weight loss.
Hence, it is extremely important for a person to stay healthy and be physically fit in order to avoid such illnesses.
The first order of business with any exercise plan, especially if you are a “dyed-in-the-wool” couch potato, is to consult with your health care provider. If you have cardiac factors, your doctor may want to perform a stress test to establish a safe level of exercise for you.
Certain complications of some diseases will also dictate what type of exercise program you can take on. Activities like weightlifting, jogging, or high-impact aerobics can possibly pose a risk for people with diabetic retinopathy due to the risk for further blood vessel damage and possible “retinal detachment.”
Health experts also contend that patients with sever peripheral neuropathy or PN should avoid foot-intensive weight-bearing exercises such as long-distance walking, jogging, or step aerobics and opt instead for low-impact activities like swimming, biking, and rowing.
If you have conditions that make exercise and physical fitness a challenge, your provider may refer you to an exercise physiologist who can design a fitness program for your specific needs.
If you are confident in how you move, but just don’t know where to start check out this article on where to start.
If you are already active in sports or work out regularly, then great work and keep it up, but it will still benefit you to discuss your regular routine with your doctor.
The bottom line is that physical fitness and exercise should not have to be a rigid activity and should be something to enjoy. Your exercise routine can be as simple as a brisk nightly neighborhood walk, walking the dog, or simply taking the stairs instead of the elevator. The important thing is that you keep on moving.