Is Weightlifting Better Than Medicine
Many of us will even spend countless hours pushing ourselves in the gym 5-7 days a week consistently throughout the year. Why do we do this? What is the real motivating force that gets us pumping weights day-after-day? Maybe the upcoming competitions, for many let's be honest we just want to look good.
For some it’s that addiction to the endorphin high that just feels really good. Maybe it the fact that some of us do care about our testosterone levels. What is the real motivational science behind our commitment to the weight room? Chances are the medicine that lives within weightlifting might not be on forefront of our core desire.
really? better than Medicine?
Medicine? Yes, that substance you go turn to when your body is suffering with a disease. You may not have ever been prescribed resistance training as a medicine by a medical professional but the truth is some medical focused organizations have been doing research on the idea of resistance training as a medicine and the results coming in are quite impressive. Here’s some of the research we found.
The American Medical Association has officially made it clear that obesity is a disease. There’s not one direct cause of obesity. What we do know from some research found on PubMed is that weightlifting or resistance training can increase the metabolism, reduce fat, increase the amount of lean fat in the body, and increase a person’s self esteem. All of which help fight against obesity.
It gets better. Researchers at the Boston University School of Medicine did research on mice by implementing a “push-up” gene in the mice. They did it to understand how strength training impacts the metabolism and other physiological systems. They discovered that weightlifting helps revert obesity and resolve metabolic disorders. If weight is a struggle lifting can really benefit the metabolism to help with weight loss. The self-esteem boost can motivate you to turn away from the kitchen and look towards the weightroom in times of struggle.
Moderate weight lifting is now recognized by the American Heart Association (AHA) to help people who have heart disease. Heart disease is the deadliest out of all the diseases, it kills more people per year than any other disease. The AHA makes it clear that cardio exercises offer the greatest value to the heart but that there are clear benefits to the heart offered by moderate weight lifting. We know that weight-lifting can even help the muscles we use during a cardio exercise endure longer, complementing the benefits cardio offers to the heart.
The AHA uses the term “moderate weight-lifting” because extreme weightlifting can tear the aorta and end up doing some serious damage to the heart.
Weightlifting strengthens the bones, muscles, tendons, in which all benefit the heart in someway. Another example on how weight-lifting benefits the heart is as the muscles burn fat, this reduces the amount of fat the heart takes on-helping prevent heart disease.
Building muscle offers some incredible benefits for diabetics. There’s a significant amount of research on the web that creates a strong argument that diabetics should take up weightlifting. The American Diabetes Association recommends for diabetics to strength train to help with blood sugar control in their body. Weightlifting is known to help the body respond better to insulin and most importantly it helps the body better regulate insulin levels.
After a good session of weightlifting the muscles will continue to help the insulin levels by burning fat. Making it so that the benefits of weightlifting for diabetics continue even after the workout is complete.
Cancer is the most complex out of all the diseases weightlifting can benefit. There are over 100 different types of cancers. You have the serious and fatal cancers like mesothelioma which exist in the lungs, and is caused by exposure to harmful elements like asbestos. Lung cancers in general mainly exist because of an exposure to harmful substances like tobacco. If your body is exposed to harmful elements there’s very little weight-lifting or exercise can do with cancer prevention.
Then you have cancers that can be triggered by low quality diets like colon cancer, pancreatic, kidney, endometrial, gallbladder, esophageal and breast cancers. For these types of cancers weightlifting can actually play a crucial role in preventing them.
The University of Texas teaches that weightlifting helps strengthen most of the system in the body by making them work better. Better working body systems help protect the body against cancer.
One international study showed that men who regularly lifted weights had a 30-40% chance of not dying from a cancerous tumor.
As you lift weights your body releases the chemicals called endorphins. Scientific research shows that the endorphins released during a workout can really help with symptoms of depression by helping people have better moods.
A good workout can also help people sleep better and deeper, which can also be connected with depression.
rule: make it to the ‘weightroom’ rather than the ‘waiting room’
That time you do spend in the weightroom can really benefit your body in more ways than you possibly imagined. It’s best to always listen to medical professionals when seeking advice on how to heal or overcome a disease but it’s refreshing to know that strength training can really help your body thrive and prevent some diseases.