Defy Statistics with Exercise

Did you know that while the average life expectancy in the United States is currently 78 years - in the 37th place on the worldwide longevity chart- a new government report indicates that only 69 of those years tend to be healthy? 

There is, however, some promising news coming from another recent study: that if you can reach the age of 50 without high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking, diabetes or obesity, you have less than a 1 in 10 chance of ever developing heart disease - the leading killer of Americans.

“This means that if you take good care of yourself, you will increase your chances of living a longer and healthier life,” says Jesse James Judd, owner of Meridian Adventure Boot Camp.

That is also the core message of the National Health Promotion and Prevention Strategy released by President Obama earlier this month. “Everyone recognizes that prevention of diseases is very important,” Judd points out. “In other words - as the saying goes – an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Along with not smoking and eating a healthy diet, regular physical exercise rates high on the prevention “must-do” list. “It’s a known fact that physical activity can protect us from high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, and obesity,” Judd says. “Considering that cardiovascular disease, stroke, cancer, and diabetes account for 7 out of 10 American deaths each year, we should certainly take prevention very seriously!” 

How exactly does regular exercise stop these deadly diseases in their tracks? Judd points out that: 

  • For heart disease, exercise normalizes blood pressure, slows down the build-up of plaque in the arteries, increases the level of “good” HDL cholesterol while reducing the “bad” LDL one, and prevents the formation of blood clots that can obstruct the arteries and lead to a stroke or heart attack.
     
  • For diabetes, exercise improves the body's ability to regulate blood sugar level.
     
  • For obesity, exercise burns calories, as well as helps maintain a healthy body weight – essential in preventing heart disease, diabetes, and some forms of cancer. 

“If you want to pack in a variety of workouts that will effectively address all these health conditions, a fitness boot camp is a great choice,” Judd notes. “Think of it as your ‘live longer and healthier’ exercise plan.”