Physical activity provides a variety of benefits that help individuals sleep better,
feel better, and perform daily tasks more easily. Greater amounts of regular moderate-
to-vigorous physical activity reduce the risk of many of the most common and
expensive diseases or conditions in the U.S. Physical activity can lower blood pressure,
improve blood lipid patterns, lower risk for heart disease, stroke, and other
cardiovascular diseases; reduce the risk of the metabolic syndrome, increase
bone density, and reduce the risk of osteoporosis; reduce the risk of breast,
colon, endometrial, esophageal, kidney, stomach, lung cancer, and other cancers;
help prevent or relieve anxiety and depression; and help weight loss and maintenance
of normal weight. Especially when both resistance and aerobic physical
activity are combined, physical activity improves glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity
and reduces risk of developing type 2 diabetes.40 Falls with injuries among
the elderly are less common among individuals who are or become more physically
Summary of major findings from the 2018 Physical Activity Guidelines Advisory
Committee Scientific Report:
• Strong evidence demonstrates that moderate-to-vigorous physical activity
improves the quality of sleep.
• Physical activity promotes immediate improvements in brain executive
function—the ability to plan, organize, self-monitor, and inhibit or facilitate
behaviors, initiate tasks, and control emotions.
• Physical activity improves cognition, including memory, processing speed,
attention, and academic performance.
• Regular physical activity reduces the risk of clinical depression and reduces
• Regular physical activity reduces symptoms of anxiety.
• Regular physical activity improves perceived quality of life.
• Physical activity improves physical function among individuals of all ages,
enabling them to conduct their daily lives with energy and without undue
• Greater amounts of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity are associated with
preventing or minimizing excessive weight gain in adults, maintaining weight
within a healthy range, and preventing obesity in adults and children ages
three to 17 years.
• Physically active women are less likely to gain excessive weight or develop
diabetes during pregnancy or develop postpartum depression.
• Greater amounts of physical activity reduce the risk of dementia and improve
• Regular physical activity provides health benefits to children as young as ages
three to five years.
• Regular physical activity reduces the risk of falls and fall-related injuries among
• Regular moderate-to-vigorous physical activity reduces the risk for cancers of
the breast, colon, bladder, endometrium, esophagus, kidney, lung, and
• Regular physical activity can reduce the risk of developing a new chronic
condition, including osteoarthritis, hypertension, and type 2 diabetes, reduce
the risk of progression of chronic conditions, and improve quality of life and
This blog presents opinions and ideas and is intended to provide helpful general information. I am not engaged in rendering advice or services to the individual reader. The ideas, procedures and suggestions in that are presented are not in any way a substitute for the advice and care of the reader’s own physician or other medical professional based on the reader’s own individual conditions, symptoms or concerns. If the reader needs personal medical, health, dietary, exercise or other assistance or advice the reader should consult a physician and/or other qualified health professionals. The author specifically disclaims all responsibility for any injury, damage or loss that the reader may incur as a direct or indirect consequence of following any directions or suggestions given in this blog or participating in any programs described in this blog or in the book, The Building Blocks of Health––How to Optimize Your Health with a Lifestyle Checklist (available in print or downloaded at Amazon, Apple, Barnes and Noble and elsewhere). Copyright 2021 by J. Joseph Speidel.