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16 Ways Exercise Makes You Happier (Infographic)

Author: Rosemary Buckle, M.D.

With the New Year upon us, many people are setting intentions for health and exercise. While exercise has many obvious physical benefits, it also makes us happier. An infographic from mindbodygreen reminds us of some of the ways exercise can make us happier…

How Exercise Benefits Us

  1. Increased dopamine in the brain. Dopamine is the chemical associated with pleasure and happiness. Exercise is one of the best ways to increase dopamine production in the brain.
  2. Lowers anxiety and depression. Exercise can provide long-term relief and mood-boosting benefits in people who suffer from anxiety and depression.
  3. Boosts energy. A good workout can actually leave you feeling more energized than before!
  4. Reduces stress. Exercise is a great way to reduce stress.
  5. Slows cognitive decline. Exercise can help slow cognitive decline and aid both memory and learning.
  6. Boosts self-confidence. Who doesn’t get excited about seeing the positive transformations brought about by exercise?
  7. Makes us more social. Some studies have shown that people do better on aerobic tests when working out with a partner. Of course, working out and being around our friends generally makes us happier.
  8. Improves quality of sleep. Regular exercise has been shown to improve sleep quality in people with sleeping disorders.
  9. Enhances creativity. Nothing gets the creative juices flowing quite like a good workout.
  10. 10. Makes us more productive. One study showed that people who make time for regular exercise are more productive at work than those who don’t.
  11. 11. Boosts memory. Exercise has been linked with increased memory capabilities in multiple studies.
  12. 12. Makes us more relaxed. Exercise is a great way to relax and unwind.
  13. 13. Improves our coping skills. Exercise is a healthy way of coping with stress and challenges.
  14. 14. Gets addiction under control. Exercise has been found to help in addiction recovery.
  15. 15. Allows us to enjoy the great outdoors. Additionally, studies have shown that exercising outdoors can increase your self-esteem.
  16. 16. Increases brain power. Cardio can actually help create new brain cells!

Check out the full infographic below for more!

Find a Houston Sports Medicine Doctor Near You

For other sports medicine needs, we invite you to schedule an appointment at Houston Institute for Sports Medicine & Orthopedics. You can schedule online or by calling (713) 756-5546.

Please consult with your physician before undertaking any form of medical treatment or adopting any exercise program or dietary guidelines.