A little physical activity a day ... keeps the doctor away. It is appropriate to say this after seeing the results of a very recent scientific research that appeared in the journal Gut Microbes thanks to the work of an English team from the University of Nottingham (Vijai et al, Gut Microbes, 2021). But let's understand better.
Physical activity improves mood
When we practice physical activity we feel in a good mood, we are cheerful, sometimes even euphoric. All thanks to particular substances synthesized by our body following sports activities such as, for example, andandamide or arachidonoylglycerol. And that's not all. In fact, it is believed that these substances are able to act on the intestinal microbiota, reducing inflammation and pain.
Exercise counteracts pain and inflammation
To understand the link between physical activity, microbiota and inflammation, the British researchers recruited 78 people, all with arthritis problems. The volunteers were divided into two groups. The first group was asked to practice physical exercises including muscle strengthening 15 minutes a day for 6 months. The second group, on the other hand, was used as a control. At the end of the 6 months, those who had practiced regularly physical activity had less pain, but also lower inflammation values. In particular, the pro-inflammatory substances, called cytokines, were reduced. Scientists have been able to understand that the mediators produced during physical activity, such as andandamide and arachidonoylglycerol, are able to act on the intestinal microbiota by increasing the good bacteria that counteract inflammation. In addition, the presence of butyrate was also increased, a short-chain fatty acid produced by the good bacteria of the microbiota through the fermentation of the fibers introduced with food. Butyrate is anti-inflammatory, modulates the immune system and is anticancer.
Never miss moderate physical activity
Therefore, here is further proof that physical exercise is one of the best drug, it is available to everyone, every day. In fact, moderate physical activity can counteract pain and inflammation, protects the intestinal microbiota, is beneficial for the immune system and the heart and fights cellular degeneration.