FitDiver® Magazine June 2016 - Page 10

Without regular physical activity, the body slowly loses its strength, stamina and ability to function well. People who are physically active and at a healthy weight live about seven years longer than those who are not active and are obese."

The American Heart Association goes on to state the following benefits of adding moderate physical exercise in addition to physical activity:

Physical exercise "Improves blood circulation, which reduces the risk of heart disease, keeps weight under control, helps in the battle to quit smoking, improves blood cholesterol levels, prevents and manages high blood pressure, prevents bone loss, boosts energy level, helps manage stress, releases tension, promotes enthusiasm and optimism, counters anxiety and depression, helps you fall asleep faster and sleep more soundly, improves self-image, increases muscle strength increasing the ability to do other physical activities, provides a way to share an activity with family and friends, reduces risk of develoing CHD/CVD by 30-40 percent, reduces risk of stroke by 20 percent in moderately active people and by 27 percent in those who are highly active, establishes good heart-healthy habits in children and counters the conditions (obesity, high blood pressure, poor cholesterol levels, poor lifestyle habits, etc.) that lead to heart attack and stroke later in life, and helps delay or prevent chronic illnesses and diseases associated with aging and

maintains better quality of life and longer independence for seniors." Whew! that's a long list, but a good one.

Physical activity combined with exercise is particularly important for divers. A review of nearly 20 years of Divers Alert Network reports on death and accidents in diving indicates the most prevelant medical conditions reported by divers are heart disease and cardiovascular illness, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, smoking, asthma and allergies. Musculoskeletal conditions most reported by divers are low back, knees and shoulder injuries.

Eat Moderate Portions

Anenomefish eat small portions. These dynamic fish are not typical predators but eat the leftover tidbits of food from anenomes. Anenomefish are known to eat plankton, molluscs and crustacea and keep a tidy home by eating certain tentacles and parasites found on its host's body. Just like us, their food provides nutrients for both structure and energy and includes protein and carbohydrates and fat.

Our bodies are our home. We can keep ourselves tidy and healthy by eating fresh whole foods and consuming moderate portions throughout the day. Schedule small meals every three hours in proportion to activity level. Sitting at a desk for the next three hours will obviously burn fewer calories and require less nutrition to fuel the activity of lifting weights or going for a walk.

Physical activity is important for maintaining good health. Adding structured exercise helps divers

prepare for the physical demands of diving.

particularly important for divers.better