Physical activity or exercise can improve your health and reduce the risk of developing several diseases like type 2 diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. Physical activity and exercise can have immediate and long-term health benefits. Most importantly, regular activity can improve your quality of life. A minimum of 30 minutes a day can allow you to enjoy these benefits.
Benefits of regular physical activity
If you are regularly physically active, you may:
- reduce your risk of a heart attack
- manage your weight better
- have a lower blood cholesterol level
- lower the risk of type 2 diabetes and some cancers
- have lower blood pressure
- have stronger bones, muscles, and joints and lower the risk of osteoporosis
- lower your risk of falls
- recover better from the period of hospitalization or bed rest
- feel better – with more energy, a better mood, feel more relaxed and sleep better.
A healthier state of mind
A number of studies have found that exercise helps depression. There are many views as to how exercise helps people with depression. Exercise may block negative thoughts or distract people from daily worries. Exercising with others provides an opportunity for increased social contact. Increased fitness may lift your mood and improve sleep patterns. Exercise may also change levels of chemicals in your brains, such as serotonin, endorphins and stress hormones.
Aim for at least 30 minutes a day
To maintain health and reduce your risk of health problems, health professionals and researchers recommend a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity on most, preferably all, days.
Physical Activity Guidelines
The Australian Government’s Physical Activity Guidelines state that:
- Doing any physical activity is better than doing none. If you currently do no physical activity, start by doing some, and gradually build up to the recommended amount.
- Be active on most, preferably all, days every week.
- Accumulate 150 to 300 minutes (2 ½ to 5 hours) of moderate intensity physical activity or 75 to 150 minutes (1 ¼ to 2 ½ hours) of vigorous intensity physical activity, or an equivalent combination of both moderate and vigorous activities, each week.
- Do muscle-strengthening activities on at least two days each week.
Ways to increase activity
Increases in daily activity can come from small changes made throughout your day, such as walking or cycling instead of using the car, getting off a tram, train or bus a stop earlier and walking the rest of the way, or walking the children to school.
See your doctor first
It is a good idea to see your doctor before starting your physical activity program if:
- you are aged over 45 years
- physical activity causes pain in your chest
- you often faint or have spells of severe dizziness
- moderate physical activity makes you very breathless
- you are at a higher risk of heart disease
- you think you might have heart disease or you have heart problems
- you are pregnant.
Pre-exercise screening is used to identify people with medical conditions that may put them at a higher risk of an experiencing a health problem during physical activity. It is a filter or ‘safety net’ to help decide if the potential benefits of exercise outweigh the risks for you. Usually, the benefits will far outweigh the risks. Print a copy of the adult pre-exercise screening tool and discuss it with your doctor, allied health or exercise professional.
Where to get help
- Your doctor
- Registered Exercise Professional
- Exercise Physiologist
Things to remember
- Aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day.
- See everyday activities as a good opportunity to be active.
- Try to find the time for some regular, vigorous exercise for extra health and fitness benefits.
- Minimise the amount of time spent in prolonged sitting and break up long periods of sitting as often as possible.
Another clinical trial looking at testosterone’s effects on depressive symptoms was wrapping up around the same time the St. Louis researchers completed their study. The results of this six-month trial, published in the medical journal Aging Male, were consistent with previous studies in showing that testosterone replacement therapy efficiently treats depression in men with low testosterone.
This study looked at 50 men with an average age of 57 who had low testosterone and were treated by urologists at the Kobe University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan. Thirty of the men were diagnosed with depression at the beginning of the study. For those men, depression symptoms significantly decreased by month 6, and only 11 of the 30 (36.7%) were still suffering from some depression after testosterone therapy.
Testosterone’s Benefits Go Beyond Depression
For all of the men, whether they had diagnosable depression at baseline or not, testosterone therapy significantly improved many aspects of health and well-being, including the following areas:
- Sleep problems
- Increased need for sleep/feeling tired
- Physical exhaustion/lacking vitality
- Decreased in muscular strength/ sense of weakness
- Depressive symptoms
- Total cholesterol
- Erectile function and libido
- Prostate symptoms
Choose Bioidentical Testosterone over Conventional
As you can see, testosterone replacement therapy can make a huge difference in the lives of men with low testosterone. The physical and emotional benefits of testosterone therapy can be gained by using bioidentical testosterone, which is testosterone that has been synthesized to exactly match the testosterone produced inside the body. Many natural and integrative healthcare practitioners prefer to prescribe bioidentical forms of testosterone rather than the more commonly prescribed pharmaceutical testosterone gels or Testosterone Injections, which do not precisely match the body’s natural testosterone and may be associated with more side effects and long-term risks.