Sitting has become the new smoking. Our sedentary inertia has become a blanket of sticky molasses gluing us to our couches, and it’s slowly killing us.
Why is exercise so important?
Well, first of all, it’s embedded in our DNA. Our ancestors routinely trekked, ran, and climbed many miles every day, and today we’re designed to do exactly the same—even if these days the farthest we walk is to the mailbox.
What happens when we spend too much time sitting?
After sitting more than an hour, your body halts production of the fat-burning enzyme lipase by as much as 90 percent! This slows down the rate at which glucose is metabolized and lowers levels of HDL—”the good”— cholesterol. Your blood sugar rises, your muscles tighten, and the muscles in your legs don’t sufficiently contract to send blood back up to your heart.
As a result, excess blood pools in your legs, your cells clump together, and circulation slows. You start feeling tired—that’s because your body is no longer producing enough insulin to ferry glucose to your muscles. Then you feel hungry, even if you just ate—this is because appetite-regulating hormones leptin and ghrelin are completely out of whack. So you eat more, you move less, and a vicious cycle ensues.
Research presented at the 2015 European Society of Cardiology conference in London suggested that just taking a brisk twenty-five-minute walk every day can tack on three to seven years of extra life. Moreover, a Cambridge University research team tracking 300,000 Europeans for twelve years determined that daily walks reduced the death rate of normal-weight people by 25 percent, and by 16 percent among the obese.
THIS IS AN EXCERPT FROM THE ENGINE 2 SEVEN-DAY RESCUE DIET.
Besides extending your life, there are plenty of additional reasons to have a nurturing relationship with your body and stay fit. Exercise:
- Improves Your Mood
- Improves Your Brain
- Boosts Your Immune System
- Improves Your Appetite and Makes You Love Healthy Food
- Lowers Your Risk of Osteoporosis
- Increases Your Energy
- Boosts Your Sex Life
- Makes it Easier to Get Out of Bed in the Morning
- Prevents Muscle Loss
We all need to move. That’s what our bodies are built to do. Find that missing joy that resides within all of us. In tandem with eating strong food, exercise will propel your health and happiness to new levels!
Need help establishing a daily exercise habit? The PLANTSTRONG Coaching program helps people create the skills needed to sustain a whole food, plant-based lifestyle—including exercise—for the long haul. If you’re tired of starting and stopping over and over again, let our coaches guide you into a new mindset and hold you accountable to your goals. Learn more HERE.