National Women’s Health Week highlights the importance of physical activity

May 14, 2014

Women live longer when they exercise for at least 30 to 60 minutes a day.

Leading a healthy lifestyle comes with long-term rewards. The Office on Women’s Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is highlighting these positive outcomes on behalf of National Women’s Health Week, which is May 11-17.

The more exercise people get, the more they lower their risk of early death. In fact, DHHS reported that individuals have a 40 percent lower risk of dying young when they exercise for about 7 hours a week. Physical activity doesn’t have to be tedious. Individuals can dance or participate in a spinning or martial arts course. These are fun ways to get people moving. Additionally, women who walk briskly for 30 minutes each day lower their risk of breast cancer 20 to 80 percent, the National Cancer Institute reported.

Physical health is interrelated with mental health. Engaging in physical activity boosts a person’s mood. Office on Women’s Health suggested fighting stress by taking time to do something enjoyable and reaching out to friends and family.

Eating healthy is also a big component in living healthily. Food like vegetables, fruits and lean protein contain all of the necessary nutrients. Everyone, including women, can take small steps toward eating better. For example, choose water instead of soda and control portions by using a smaller plate.

Join in the celebration of this special week by telling the women in your life how to live longer, healthier and happier lives.