How to Use Exercise as your Medicine     

    Posted by Architect Quin Sajorda on June 27th, 2011

    How can Exercise be used as your Medicine?

    Senior citizen Quin, 67, lift weight

    from 12lbs to 315lbs in 1-1/2 year


    Let us count the ways… and let us not underestimate the value of exercises. And to give emphasis on the benefits of regular and moderate physical activity, the items below are some illnesses that can be prevented and/or restored to good health:

    1. Cardiovascular health Increases heart strength and overall cardiovascular function (including blood vessels), which decreases the chance of developing cardiovascular disease, such as coronary heart disease and strokes.

    2. Helps maintain healthy blood. Can increase HDL cholesterol and lower LDL-cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood.

    3. Obesity. Helps maintain lean tissue and promote loss of fat tissue (such as abdominal fat stores).

    4. Assists in better control of appetite and increases energy expenditure.

    5.  Helps prevent or reverse development of diseases associated with obesity, including type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and disease, even if one doesn’t attain a more healthy weight.

    6. Muscular health. Contributes to building and maintaining muscle mass and muscle tone.

     7. Diabetes. Increase glucose uptake by muscle tissue cells independent of insulin action.

    Contributes to energy balance, which decreases risk of type 2 diabetes and related complications.

    8. Osteoporosis. Helps strengthen bones and contributes to joint health.

    9. Infections. Reduces susceptibility to respiratory and other infections by enhancing various functions of the immune system.

    10. Cancer. Reduces risk of colon cancer and likely breast cancer.

    11. Fewer injuries {e.g., from falls}

    12. Improves peristaltic function in the small intestine and colonic mass movements.

    13. Lessens risk of gallstones and gallbladder disease.

    14. Contributes to balance and agility, especially in older adulthood.

    15. Reduces depression, anxiety, and mental stress while enhancing a sense of well-being and self-image and improving sleep patterns.





    What are your energy sources when you are exercising;

    Carbohydrates (anaerobic) –High-intensity exercise, especially lasting 30 seconds to 2 minutes. Example: 20-meter to 200-meter sprint

    Carbohydrates (aerobic) –Exercise lasting 2 minutes to 3 hours or more; the higher the intensity the greater the use. Examples: Basketball, swimming, running, jogging, Tennis, aerobic dancing.

    Fat (aerobic) –Exercise lasting more than few minutes; greater amounts are used at lower exercise intensities. Examples: Long-distance running, long-distance cycling; treadmill, brisk walking and gardening.

    Protein (aerobic)–Low quantity during all exercise; moderate quantity in endurance exercise, especially when carbohydrate fuel is lacking. Examples: Progressive weight resistance training and long-distance running.

    *Source for the above: Perspectives in Nutrition, 2004, Sixth Edition by Wardlaw, Hampl and DiSilvestro


    Being the architect of your body, you have to understand where you are getting these energies, and when in use (physical activities). Above items will illustrate energy sources as used on examples of exercises or activities.

    You have to remember that energies are measured in calories. Therefore, in order not to gain weight, energy input = energy output (expenditure includes basal metabolism). You can make experiment of your food intake – taking note of carbohydrates, fats and protein energy, based on your exercises or physical activities. Ideal diet will be discussed in another article.

    To gain weight, you have to add more calories by eating more but not full. Eat 5 – 6 times a day. 

    To reduce weight, eat less by reducing your calorie intake. Eat 70 – 80% from your usual volume of food intake. The target date of meeting your goal in reducing should not be 3 or 6 months; it must be a year or more depending on the weight you want to reduce. We do not want immediate, no hurry, so that your body will not be stressed. It has to be done gradually and smoothly. Have a bathroom scale to monitor your weight regularly.

    When shaping your body for an ideal configuration, have a goal of your body measurement for your chest, waist, hips, arms and legs. Based on your height and weight your target Body Mass Index (BMI) must be 20 to 22. If you are heavy weight you may target BMI 22 in 5 years. If obese, target it in 7 years. If you are slim, you may wish to hit BMI 20. If weight above normal, BMI 21 for 2 years.

    Why BMI 20 – 22? 

    …Because all living centenarians have these BMI. Thin, heavy weight and obese people have shorter lives. Thin people have a tendency for respiratory illness and heavy weight/obese – heart problem, high blood, diabetes and cancer. For those who have higher BMI’s and would not like to reduce because you feel healthy and strong, I salute you…maybe a new breed of centenarians is coming.

    Long-living  Okinawan of Japan has BMI 20 – 21 and accordingly they do not eat to the extent that they feel full. They eat only at 80% full – a calorie restricted nutritious diet principle…and they have to keep up their weight.

    The oldest American from Montana, Walter Breuning, who recently died (April, 2011) at the age 114 said, he only eats 2 times a day. His BMI could be 20 based on his photo, also used a walker in the photo. I can agree with him, being old has less energy expenditure. His activities are confined in the house where he lives and does not worry in getting and preparing for his food.

    Most long- living centenarians, I presumed, have osteoporosis; some are just lying down, using wheel chair or a walker to go around. If we could reverse this, there is a possibility that we could surpass 114 years. The good news is there are now medications for osteoporosis and ways to avoid it by using progressive weight resistance training and nutraceuticals to strengthen the bones, muscles, add testosterone level, promote human growth and sex hormones…This procedure and other methods; I like to hear, if somebody is practicing it especially the health and delaying aging enthusiasts and body builders.

    As my conclusion, this was what Walter Breuning said: “Don’t retire until you are darn sure that you can’t work anymore. Keep on working as long as you can work and you’ll find that’s good for you.” … and that’s why am still working even having a typing speed of 15-20 words per minute.

     Remember, you can shape your body the way you want it. You are the architect of your body.


    Quint Sajorda

    Body Architect



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