Remember Sargent Carter on Gomer Pyle? He was forever yelling, “Move it! Move it! Move it!”
Well, it turns out, he had the right idea! Physical activity is important for more reasons than we previously realized. We have known for years that exercise builds muscle, helps circulation, lowers cholesterol, lubricates arthritic joints, lowers blood sugar levels, and a host of other benefits…
BUT did you know that when you move, your muscles actually produce chemicals called myokines that are released into your bloodstream to lower inflammation throughout your body? Doesn’t this sound better than taking medication? And you don’t have to exercise vigorously to receive some benefits! We were created to move, and we maintain our bodies when we do just that!
Brad Stockert, a fellow physical therapist, put it well in his article on Prevention and Treatment of Chronic Noncommunicable Disease: “Chronic physical training is known to be associated with a reduced risk of all-cause mortality independent of any change in BMI (body mass index http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bmi/ ) . Physical inactivity is now considered to be a stronger predictor than hypertension, hyperlipidemia, diabetes and obesity for all-cause mortality.
Cross-sectional studies have shown a strong association between the level of physical inactivity and the amount of low-grade chronic inflammation found in young and elderly subjects.”
In other words: MOVE IT to lower inflammation, and your chances of chronic disease