Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Why Being Active Makes You Happy

Michael O'Shea wrote a nice article for Parade Magazine inside last Sunday's Boston Globe. In it, he writes about why/how exercise makes you happy. I thought I'd share with you what I took from the article:

-Most people are aware of endorphins being released in the body during exercise to improve one's mood. However, two other compounds are also released. Serotonin keeps us from getting depressed and dopamine keeps us motivated. These morphine-like compounds prove exercise to be the best drug on the market. Best of all, it's free!

-Exercise improves sleep patterns as well. Stress hormones (i.e. cortisol) and anxiety are each reduced, contributing to a better night's sleep.

-Engaging in regular physical activity improves one's self-image. Boosting your self-esteem leads to higher levels of confidence, something many people could use.

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