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Dr. Rick's Health Tip of the Month

August 1999

Exercise: The Best "Drug" in the World

By Rick Allen, DC

Exercise has many beneficial effects. As Covert Bailey says, "If the benefits of exercise could be put into a bottle, it would be the most widely-prescribed drug in the world." Guess that makes exercise the best "drug" in the world!

Yet, when I counsel a patient to exercise, I often get an answer like, "Yeah, doc, I know all about exercise and diet, but what can I really do to help?"

Often it appears that things with which you are very familiar are automatically either ignored or discounted. Don't ignore or discount this miracle cure. Among the many benefits of exercise are:

  • Cardiovascular benefits - lowers total cholesterol, lowers the bad LDL cholesterol, raises the good HDL cholesterol, decreases blood pressure, decreases frequency of heart disease.

  • Immune system benefits - decreases number and severity of colds and flu, decreases rates of cancer.

  • Digestive benefits - improves digestion, cures constipation.

  • Blood sugar benefits - helps normalize levels, preventing or controlling hypoglycemia and adult diabetes.

  • Obesity - increases use of calories at rest (with a carry-over effect to the next day!), increases muscle-to-fat ratio, routine use over years cures obesity.

  • Mental health benefits - lowers stress, elevates mood, enhances sense of well being, eases depression and grief.

  • Sexuality benefits - enhances sexual enjoyment, regular use enhances sexual attractiveness.

  • Miscellaneous benefits - improves body odor, decreases tendency to abuse damaging drugs, alcohol and tobacco, increases average life span, improves quality of life (especially in later years).

So why doesn't everyone use this miracle "drug", especially since it's inexpensive and readily available? The answer is that you can't just go out and buy a bottle. Everyone has to put in time and effort to get their own personal supply.

Take another look at the list of benefits. Start taking the steps, even little baby steps, toward better health.

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