How does exercise work for my nervous system?

Regular exercise improves

  • Heart function
  • Blood circulation
  • Oxygenation

for your brain and nervous system, your muscle and your nerves.

Blood vessels in the muscles dilate to boost local oxygen and energy, and constrict in places that are idle to compensate. This process is regulated by small fiber nerve endings.

Exercise also seems to increase the birth of new neurons, including those that transmit nerve impulses to the brain’s hippocampus which is important in memory as well as improving connections between neurons and the health of capillaries that support neurons.

Physical activity is associated with reduced risk of CV disease, diabetes, cancer and dementia in a dose-dependent fashion. And of course, physical activity is especially important for women who are more at risk for complications and death from heart disease, stroke and are more likely to get dementia as opposed to men.

So what’s our target ladies?

According to an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association in November of 2015, we should strive for:

  • 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise every day :(such as brisk walking, dancing, gardening)
  • or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity exercise every week: (such as running, fast cycling, competitive sports).

Even though physical activity is associated with a significant reduced risk of cardiovascular problems such as blocked arteries, heart attach, diabetes, cancer, and dementia in a dose-dependent fashion (the more you do the more your benefit), more than 1/2 of US adults fail to meet these recommendations. That includes us women.

The good news is that according to the Cooler Institute: 7 minutes a day of high intensity physical activity was associated with reduced cardiovascular mortality over 15 years.

The goal is to increase your heart rate and breathing in a sustained fashion for more than a half hour at a time. That will lead to a vigorous response to not only boost up your nervous system function but fight off deadly diseases that plague us.