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Can Exercise Help Anxiety?

Updated on March 21, 2020
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I'm a health and fitness writer and a fitness enthusiast. I believe that understanding your own body is the way to a healthy life.

Anxiety hits very hard

When I experienced anxiety attack for the first time it sent my head floating for hours. Even if how much I tried to ignore it, it still got hold of me. It seems that that the situation only worsens as minutes passed. Then my brain started to run amok jumping to every negative conclusion in situations that did not even bother me before. Now, everything seems to be very negative inside my thoughts.

One thing that I’ve learned about anxiety is that you can never cover yourself from it. And you cannot totally avoid it. But, you can help yourself lessen the severity of each attack by doing activities that help keep your body healthy. One of such activities is exercise. So why do you need to exercise?

Lowers blood pressure

. Hypertension is very common these days. Some doctors even consider this as epidemic for as young as 20 years old one can already acquire it. When your blood pressure is elevated, your heart is doubling its effort to pump your blood. This causes your thoughts to become cloudy which often triggers anxiety problems.

Hypertension is considered as a lifestyle disease as it can develop through wrong food choices and the lack of physical activity. But the good news is, you can help slow down or even stop hypertension on its track with proper exercise.

One reason for this is that regularly exercise routine helps your heart develop stronger muscles. With stronger muscles, your heart will have to exert lesser effort keeping your blood pressure steady.

Some studies even suggest that exercise can help lower one’s systolic blood pressure by as much as 4 to 9 mm Hg. This difference is good enough for some people to reduce their medication or even eliminate it completely for minor cases. And with lower blood pressure, your mind can see clearer which in turn helps eliminate that nagging thought that keeps on coming back.

Gets your blood flowing

A healthy circulatory system is very beneficial for your body as our blood is responsible for transporting the nutrients it needs. Poor blood circulation interferes with this process resulting to a lot of health issues in the long run. This will have a negative impact on our nervous system. When you experience cloudy thoughts or have a very short temper, you might be experiencing from poor oxygen levels or a chemical imbalance in your body. All of this can be attributed to poor blood flow.

Exercise can alleviate this problem. When you engage in any physical activity your heart also exerts more effort to pump blood. This is necessary to support the working muscles. And because your heart is pumping harder, your blood is also flowing at a much higher rate. This in turn delivers more oxygen in your bloodstream which is a good thing for both mind and body. We all know that stress starts in our mind and a healthy brain helps bring healthy thoughts. And healthy thoughts keep your anxiety in check.

Elevates your mood

For someone who is bugged by anxiety for days, a few of hours of relief is already a huge achievement. What most people don’t know is that exercise, even the light 10-minute walk, can elevate your mood. Being moody is often one of the symptoms of anxiety. If you happen to experience this condition, you’ll know that a simple wrong gesture from someone can send your mood to go berserk in a matter of seconds. This is because you already have heavy thoughts inside you and if some external factors nudge you in a wrong way, things can go out of control.

Good thing exercise releases happy hormones. This helps you take comfort from what you feel as your brain becomes at ease after some good amount of sweating. It will give you better perspective about your situation instead of just hanging around your problems. So keep those legs busy and those arms flexed, you’ll see a huge improvement in your mood.

More than just getting fit

Often, we tend to look at exercise as a way to eliminate excess body fats and cholesterol. But it’s actually more than that as exercise has a lot of benefits that goes beyond a perfectly fit body. Keeping those heart muscles pumping will keep it healthy and strong. A strong and healthy heart is very essential in keeping your circulatory system in tip-top condition. And when you have a healthy body, your brain is the first one to reap the benefits. And remember, always keep happy and healthy thoughts, it’s the first step in dealing with anxiety.

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