How exercise helps mental health – the five key benefits



We’re all stressed every now and then but some people are more easily stressed out than others.

The Mental Health Foundation explained: “When events occur that make us feel threatened or that upset our balance in some way, our body’s defences cut in and create a stress response, which may make us feel a variety of uncomfortable physical symptoms and make us behave differently, and we may also experience emotions more intensely.

“The most common physical signs of stress include sleeping problems, sweating, and loss of appetite.

“Symptoms like these are triggered by a rush of stress hormones in our body – otherwise known as the ‘fight or flight’ response.

“It is these hormones, adrenaline and noradrenaline, which raise our blood pressure, increase our heart rate and increase the rate at which we perspire, preparing our body for emergency response.

“They can also reduce blood flow to our skin and can reduce our stomach activity, while cortisol, another stress hormone, releases fat and sugar into the system to boost our energy.”

Physical exercise can be very effective in relieving stress, a range of research has shown.

One study on employed adults found that highly active individuals tend to have lower stress rates compared to individuals who are less active.



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