If you work online from home the way I do, you are probably spending long periods of time sitting at your computer and not getting any exercise.
You may already realize that this isn’t good for you physically, but did you know it isn’t even healthy for you mentally?
It’s a fact: lack of physical activity tends to make your brain and thought processes sluggish. We all know that physical exercise is good for our bodies, but I was quite surprised when I learned that my brain power and mental health would be improved by exercising, as well.
Research has shown that regular exercise along with a sensible diet can work wonders to improve your mental clarity, as well as providing other benefits to your mental health. Your emotional health can also be much improved with exercise and eating the right foods.
The Benefits of Diet and Exercise
Here are some ways that exercise and a healthy diet can help you mentally and emotionally:
If, like me, you have gained weight since starting to work at home, a nutritious diet and plenty of exercise will slim you down and help boost your self esteem accordingly. It’s hard to feel 100% good about yourself when you know you’re overweight.
Exercising and eating the right things will give you more energy all over, including your brain. There is evidence that exercise lessens your risk of Alzheimer’s and slows mental decline. According to findings released at the Alzheimer’s Association International Conference of 2012 in Vancouver last week, exercise can help promote mental function and lessen cognitive impairment even in people already showing signs of mental decline. So, it should definitely help the rest of us, too.
Source: AAIC Press Release July 15, 2012
When you exercise, your brain releases “feel good” chemicals and hormones such as serotonin, dopamine, norepinephrine and endorphins. These things rev up your brain’s vitality, elevate your mood and alleviate stress. Studies have shown that a proper diet and sufficient exercise can also help those who struggle with depression.
A good workout routine does wonderful things for you if you have trouble sleeping. I have been a lifelong insomniac and sleep deprivation was a problem for me. It slowed down my thinking and made me feel dragged out all day long. To my delight, exercise helped me with this problem from the very first day! I get more work done now simply because my brain is rested and refreshed after getting enough sleep.
Food for thought—Besides helping shed excess weight, or preventing weight gain that is so common to those of us who work online; your diet plays a big part in your mental processes. Lack of Omega 3s, for instance, that are found in fish and seafood, can contribute to depression and is believed to impair brain function.
Eating to Live Instead of Living to Eat
I have a confession to make: I love to eat. I’m a foodie to the core. If I had to choose a different profession besides what I do now, I’d want to be a chef because not only do I love to eat good food—I love to cook it, too. My wife is thrilled with my hobby and eagerly looks forward to the new recipes I prepare at least one evening a week.
But, my wife can lick the platter clean and never gain an ounce while I only have to inhale a toothsome dish to pack on five pounds. I’m convinced it has to be the difference in our metabolisms.
She must have the metabolism of a greyhound while I, on the other hand, metabolize everything straight to my ever-expanding waistline.
We’re like Jack Spratt and his better half in reverse.
I won’t pretend it’s easy, but I’m slowly learning to rethink the way I look at eating and the role of food in my life. It’s much healthier if you’re eating to live instead of living to eat. I still love food, but I’m choosing foods that will love me back by making me healthier.
Work at Home, Workout at Home
Besides changing my diet to help me lose weight and improve my body, mind and mood; I also got online and found a ton of helpful information about exercising at home and best cardio exercise equipment from www.homegymadviser.com.
It helped me decide what home gym was right for me and the factors I needed to take into consideration when shopping for home workout equipment.
The difference in how I feel—mentally as well as physically—after just a short time of using my home gym is nothing short of amazing. If you work at home and want to keep your brain and your body running like a well oiled machine—start eating a healthy diet and get yourself a home gym so that it’s easy to get the exercise you need!
Rick Mercado is a successful writer and online marketer who switched from a very active job to working on his computer from home. Only in his mid-thirties, Rick decided to start watching his diet and getting regular exercise to lose weight and improve his overall wellness. He and his wife enjoy kayaking and hiking close to home on the rugged east coast of Canada in Halifax, Nova Scotia. He recommends www.homegymadviser.com to anyone who wants to research how to stay fit while working from home.