Fitness is part of a woman’s overall health and wellness, and the notion of being fit means having a healthy body weight and the ability to perform physical fitness activities without tiring easily.
Unfortunately, studies show that American women are not fit, they are actually fat, and will only continue to get fatter. It is reported that 72 percent of women are projected to be overweight or obese by the year 2020. Similarly, 34 percent of women are obese, and those numbers are expected to rise significantly in the coming years as well.
Whether we eat for comfort or convenience, we are putting too much into our bodies that’s not good for us, and spending way too much time sedentary. Fitness, as part of whole body wellness, is critical and it is possible to make lifestyle changes that can truly help. Ageology physicians can show you how.
Part of the problem is most traditional doctors avoid talking to women about weight gain, exercise and proper nutrition. Instead, many write a prescription to treat a symptom rather than fix the real cause. Imagine walking out of a doctor’s office with a prescription that reads:
- Walk for 40 minutes a day three times a week
- Take a yoga class 2 times a week
- Remove all sugar from your diet
- Get 8-10 hours a sleep a night
Women may be surprised at the mounds of evidence linking physical activity to numerous health improvements. Most significantly, regular physical activity greatly reduces the risk of dying from coronary heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States. Physical activity also reduces the risk of developing diabetes, hypertension, and colon cancer, enhances mental health, fosters healthy muscles, bones, and joints, and helps maintain function, as well as preserves independence in older adults.
Be Fit or Die Fat?
The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans state that an active lifestyle can lower your risk of early death from a variety of causes. There is strong evidence that regular physical activity can also lower your risk of:
- Heart disease
- High blood pressure
- Unhealthy cholesterol levels
- Type 2 diabetes
- Metabolic syndrome
- Colon cancer
- Breast cancer
Regular activity can help prevent unhealthy weight gain and also help with weight loss, when combined with proper nutrition and hormonal balance, and prescribed medications, as needed. If you are overweight or obese, losing weight can lower your risk for many diseases and also reduce the symptoms of menopause and other hormonal imbalances. Being overweight or obese increases your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, type 2 diabetes, breathing problems, osteoarthritis, gallbladder disease, sleep apnea (breathing problems while sleeping), and some cancers.
Health Benefits of Being Fit vs. Fat
Regular physical activity can also improve your cardiorespiratory (heart, lungs, and blood vessels) and muscular fitness. For women over 40, physical activity may also help:
- Stimulate mental focus
- Improve functional health
- Reduce waistline size
- Lower risk of hip fracture
- Lower risk of lung cancer
- Lower risk of endometrial cancer
- Maintain weight after weight loss
- Increase bone density
- Improve sleep quality
- Reduce stress
For more information on how you can get well, feel well and age well, contact an Ageology physician near you today.
Learn more about women’s health issues and how Ageology can help:
Read Ageology’s recent blog posts and library resources to learn more about women’s fitness and integrative metabolic medicine: