A few examples of the pros and cons of exercise May 2, 2010Posted by Kyle in Uncategorized.
If finals have you stressed out and feeling down, maybe you should try a little “green exercise.” According to Jules Pretty and Jo Barton, green exercise is any physical activity done in nature. In their study, the results show that just a small amount of time outdoors is a plus for mental health and sense of well being. Something as simple as taking a walk in the Eco Lab could boost your confidence after a few long hours of studying. The best part is the evidence shows that optimum benefits are achieved after just five minutes of activity. So whether you like to run, walk, or ride, you don’t have to spend much time doing it to feel better. This is great news for people who don’t really have a lot of spare time, like a student studying for finals. The study included over 1,200 individuals, and the activities they participated in included walking, gardening, cycling, fishing, boating, horse-riding and farming. So for those who don’t like to do much physical activity, you can just sit on a boat all day fishing and feel a whole lot better about yourself after.
Most people who exercise regularly already know that there are not only physical benefits but mental benefits as well. There have been multiple studies that have shown regular exercise can help individuals with arthritis, diabetes, and even cancer. Another recent study has shown that regular exercise can help relieve anxiety. So if you are feeling anxious or depressed, a quick jog could help make you feel better. Most participants in the study felt less symptoms such as worry, apprehension, and nervousness. Exercising for more than thirty minutes was best at reducing anxiety. While exercise seems to be great for your body and mind, over exercising can also be a bad thing.
For the same reasons that exercise can help make you feel better, it can also become addicting. Researchers believe that because exercise induces the release of neurotransmitters like dopamine and endorphins, it can become an addiction. Excessive exercising can lead to unhealthy weight loss along with other issues. In one study, researchers used two groups of rats, one active and one inactive group, to test their hypothesis. After several weeks the rats were given naloxone, a medication for heroin overdose that causes immediate withdrawal symptoms. They found that the rats that ran the most had the worst reactions to the drug, while the inactive rats had very little response. This study shows that while exercise is important to a healthy lifestyle, overdoing it can have potentially dangerous consequences.