Today, the practice of sport is often associated with pleasure but also with weight loss or to keep in shape. Yet sport has other benefits. Among them, we find the improvement of chronic diseases such as diabetes, cancer, cardiovascular diseases, but also the prevention against some of them.
Sport for diabetics
If you have diabetes, you know that the disease will damage your blood vessels and increase your risk of having a cardiovascular problem. Physical activity will increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin, whether injected or secreted by the body. In addition, it will improve blood glucose control, lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, and reduce the risk of recurrence of certain cancers.
Walking that avoids sedentary lifestyles and stimulates metabolism. It is advisable to walk at least 30 minutes a day, regardless of age. But other sports are recommended for diabetics such as: team games, gentle activities and endurance sports.
Regular physical activity when you have diabetes will also have psychological repercussions, such as better acceptance of the disease, better social integration, and a reduction in the stress caused by the disease.
Sport to fight Alzheimer’s disease
Indeed, regular physical activity would reduce the risk of cognitive decline but also the risk of one day suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Sport has a protective effect on our brains and allows people with this disease to live better.
Several studies have shown that some patients may have improved motor performance through regular physical activity, such as: improved walking speed, and decreased motor functional decline.
Practice is also important to maintain patients’ functional independence as it is an important element in their quality of life. At the social level, it reduces psycho-behavioural disorders.
In the prevention of dementia, physical practice is one of them. Numerous observational studies suggest that sport can delay the onset of dementia and slow cognitive decline. This is explained by the fact that sport will reduce cardiovascular risks by protecting the brain.
Sport in prevention against certain types of cancer
Regular physical activity reduces the risk of cancer and even, if the disease occurs, sport can reduce the risk of death.
Physical activity is recommended before, during and after cancer. Practiced at a certain dose, it reduces the risk of developing this disease. Several studies have shown its protective effect against several cancers, such as colon and breast cancer, which are among the most frequent cancers. Other cancers are involved (thyroid, lung, etc.) but the level of evidence is more or less high. Playing sports would reduce the risk of colon cancer by 30 to 40% and breast cancer by 20 to 30% compared to those who are inactive.
The protective properties can be explained by different mechanisms: a control of body weight that increases during certain cancers, but also a decrease in the level of certain hormones that promotes cell proliferation.
Even during your treatment, the practice of sport is recommended, taking into account the possibilities you have. Regardless of the intensity of your activity, the practice improves the quality of your life, depression, sleep, well-being, anxiety and the image you have on your body. Studies have shown that the risk of disease-related mortality is 26 to 40% lower among those who participate in regular physical activity.
Sport and heart problems
Contrary to what we can hear, most people with heart disease can participate in sports of varying degrees of intensity.
Sport will have a beneficial effect on the arteries and heart, even if the person has heart disease. Regular physical activity will improve blood circulation, lower blood pressure, and improve myocardial performance. In addition, physical activity will help protect the arteries, since it will improve vasodilation of the arteries, therefore, blood circulation will improve. It also reduces the risk of diabetes (type II) as it will help maintain glycemic control.