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updated: 4/5/2013 9:15 PM

Got stress? Ways working out can help

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  • Dr. Daniel Di Iorio, MD

    Dr. Daniel Di Iorio, MD

Dr. Daniel Di Iorio, MD

Everyone is bound to have some sort of stress in their life at one time or another. While many ways can be unhealthy such as eating poorly, or drinking excessively, there are many ways to deal with stress effectively.

Being active is not only great for your overall health, but it also beneficial in decreasing the effects of stress. Exercise has been shown to increase blood flow to the brain, release hormones, stimulate the nervous system and increase levels of endorphins. Endorphins are hormones that when released can have a positive effect on mood.

Exercising regularly has also shown many psychological benefits as well. It can be used as a wall to help block stress and may help protect the cardiovascular and immune systems from the effects stress has on the body.

There are many different ways one can exercise. Some exercises such as running or playing tennis are great ways to get the heart rate up. Increasing your heart rate during exercise provides many short and long term benefits such as increased stamina, burning more calories, and raising good cholesterol.

Other exercises such as yoga or Tae Chi, can lower your resting heart rate, and can lower your blood pressure. Although you burn fewer calories with these kinds of exercises, they have been proven to help relax your body and focus your mind, which directly plays into helping your stress levels.

Studies have also shown that different types of exercise can decrease feelings of anxiety and depression, not to mention can improve your self-image.

Along with increasing stress, there are many other ways working out can benefit you, such as:

• Lowering body fat levels

• Reducing chances of disease

• Lowering blood pressure

• Releasing hormones that make you feel better

Before beginning any regular exercise program be sure to consult your doctor. Too much exercise or the wrong types can actually harm your body. A doctor can tell you about which exercises might be the best kind for you and your body.

Dr. Daniel R. Di Iorio, MD, specializes in Family Medicine with emphasis in Sports Medicine and specifically Concussion Care. He has 9 years of experience and practice. His office is located in Barrington, IL at Advocate Good Shepherd's Fitness Center.