Health

They have just shown that the more exercise you practice, the happier you are, even if you don’t believe it

The RAE says that happiness is “the state of pleasant spiritual and physical satisfaction”. A simple meaning that, analyzed in a more scientific way, contains much more complex nuances, since to get satisfied with our lives we must work consciously in aspects such as acceptance, security or self-confidence, to give just a few examples. Neuroscientists keep reminding us that we are the sculptors of our own brains and that, in mental matters, nothing is written, not even by genes (even though these predict up to 50% the level of happiness).

The potential to be happier depends to a large extent (almost the other 50%) of will and intentionality, that is, of our deliberate actsas they insist on demonstrating scientific psychology, neuroscience and the science of happiness, disciplines in charge of translate the habits of happy people into concrete strategies to make it easier for us.

Those who maintain affective and close relationships are not only happier, but also live longer. He came to this conclusion the Grant Study at Harvard University, one of the largest and most comprehensive studies in the world on adult life that has been collecting data since the beginning of the last century.

Also the state of mind of happiness – remember, it is not a goal – is achieved by focusing on positive emotions: the most optimistic, caring, kind, grateful, generous, and productive people are happier and more satisfied with their lives. Researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky, a professor of psychology at the University of California, detected these habits in happy people and exposed them in her book The science of happines.

physical issues

Happiness is also chemical: that’s what the cocktail of hormones that have a positive impact on our health, well-being and state of mind. And the easiest way to activate them in our body is through physical activity and sport: dopamine produces a feeling of pleasure, serotonin is a natural antidepressant and endorphin acts as a natural pain reliever that improves mood, reduces pain and promotes calm, which is why it is known as the hormone of happiness

to study the Association between physical exercise and mental health jointly commissioned by Yale and Oxford Universities, which found that people who exercised regularly for a month felt bad almost 44% less than those who did not practice it.

Beyond reducing the risk of mortality from cardiovascular disease, stroke or diabetes, exercise also influences our mood and, therefore, our emotional well-being. Surely you have suffered too the so-called ‘runner’s high’, that ephemeral state of euphoria after a race that leaves you with a pleasant sensation of tranquility and relaxation after having carried out a high-intensity workout. It’s your muscles and cells demanding oxygen to your body when changing from aerobic to anaerobic metabolism.

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