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3 Ways Exercise Can Help Improve Mental Health

exercise for mental health

Most mental health problems, such as depression and anxiety, are caused by an imbalance of chemicals in the brain known as neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters are a range of chemicals found in the brain when specific emotional states are being experienced.

For example, adrenaline is released due to fear or anger. That produces the “fight or flight” response associated with removing yourself from dangerous situations. But, what if there was an overload of adrenaline in your system, even when you weren’t in danger, because your pituitary gland was producing too much of it? That would override the effects of the other hormones that affect the mind, such as serotonin and dopamine.

Chemical Imbalances Trigger Mood Disorders

If the medical and advertising companies could genuinely work together to reveal the truth about mental health, the public would be better informed. Most mental health problems can be traced to a lack of or too much of a particular hormone. The overabundance or deficiency of crucial neurotransmitters in the brain plays a decisive role in mental health.

Exercising for Balanced Brain Chemistry

Do your part in making sure your brain chemistry is well balanced by consuming the right foods and staying active. Meditation, deep breathing, and exercise can help your endocrine glands release essential hormones related to optimum mental health. With training, you can stimulate the release of endorphins that can make you feel relaxed and happy in minutes, and the effects can last for hours.

1. Walking for Mental Clarity

It might not be easy to start exercising regularly, especially if you’ve lived a stationary lifestyle for months or more. Walking is one of the popular forms of exercise if you want to get moving, but what if you are worried about expending too much energy? You might not be ready to begin strength training exercises, but you owe yourself to start with some long-distance walking.

Walking is an excellent way of making your adrenal glands produce more norepinephrine. It is a hormone that can dramatically increase your heart rate and improves blood flow. After about fifteen minutes of continuous rapid walking, feelings of mental clarity and calm will help you focus on your issues. You will find yourself coming up with meaningful and practical steps you can take to resolve them.

2. Strength Training for Motivation and Endurance

After several weeks of regular long-distance walking, you might want to start speedwalking or short-distance jogging to get the same effect. Adding some strength training to your daily regimen is advisable at this time. If you don’t have exercise equipment, start with push-ups, leg bends, stomach muscle exercises, stretching exercises, etc.

You will need to give your body the nutrition it needs if you intend to improve your health and physique. Try exercising first thing in the morning upon awakening, and you will notice the difference it makes to your day. A vegetable and vegetable smoothie with whey protein powder will give you all the energy and protein you need to get started. Cellucor supplements are good examples of health supplements that provide adequate nutrition for those attempting to lose body fat while gaining muscle mass.

During strength training exercises, the adrenal and endocrine glands produce more norepinephrine, dopamine, and epinephrine, also known as adrenaline. With regular aerobic and strength training exercises, you will notice improved mental clarity and self-esteem.

3. Improved Sleep Cycles

Serotonin is a well-known hormone for producing feelings of well-being and happiness. It can also increase your appetite and help you fall asleep at night. A good night’s sleep helps your mind recover from minor or largely insignificant daily traumas and the more severe types that have been suppressed over a long period.

Regular exercise can significantly increase serotonin levels, but it can also be a treatment for frequent or recurring depression, anxiety, and self-doubt. If you are recovering from alcohol and substance abuse, then regular exercise could be seen as a form of meditation and self-therapy.