What if I told you there was medicine that could treat cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure? What if this same medicine was also effective in treating lung disease, arthritis, and reducing cancer risk? Would you be interested getting a prescription for this medicine? Does this sound too good to be true?
The good news is that there is a medicine that can do all of these things. The catch is that it’s not on a shelf at your local pharmacy. This medicine has to be consumed most days of the week and it takes 30 minutes each time. It’s exercise! Make no mistake. Exercise is a medicine! It’s easy to think of exercise as something we should be doing but could cut out of our schedule if too busy. However, the evidence is overwhelming on how exercise is like medicine for the human body. Regular exercise, along with other healthy lifestyle choices, can treat and reduce the risk for many chronic diseases.
Discuss with your health care provider if regular exercise is appropriate for you. Southeastern Health has wonderful programs and services to help you get on the beneficial path of regular exercise. Ready to get started? If so, I look forward to sharing more helpful information about the benefits of exercise and healthy lifestyle choices in the coming weeks. To learn more, logon to www.southeasternhealth.org.
Ash Walker is a clinical exercise physiologist with the cardiopulmonary rehabilitation program at Southeastern Health. He is also an adjunct faculty at UNC-Pembroke and St. Andrews University.