In today's increasingly health-minded culture, you are probably aware at least that exercise is good for you. However, do you know precisely what a daily workout can do for your body, mind, and spirit? According to Dr. Bikash Chowdhury, a specialist in family medicine devoted to the health and overall well-being of his patients, even a light workout using bodyweight exercises, some aerobics or cardio is better than nothing at all. 

Below, Dr. Bikash Chowdhury shares five reasons why you need to strive to incorporate exercise into your daily routine:

1. It can improve your mood. 

Sometimes a good workout is all you need to relieve some of the stress from a busy day at work or home with the kids. Getting good and tired can leave you with a feeling of accomplishment, which works wonders for confidence and self-esteem. On top of that, though, regular exercise is correlated with higher levels of dopamine, a chemical the brain produces that makes you feel good. So in addition to the feeling of accomplishment and success you have with dropping a clothing size, seeing results in the mirror, or lifting more weight at the gym, exercising daily can help you be happier.

2. It builds good habits. 

For someone who doesn't exercise regularly, building a daily routine that incorporates even a light workout is critical. Light workouts are likely not going to result in drastic changes in your body or health, but more importantly, you are building good habits in the long run. Even if you're sore from a previous workout or you're just not feeling like doing something, going for a brisk walk around the block or doing some bodyweight exercises in your living room helps you to build the habit of thinking about fitness. Coupled with a change in diet, you may start seeing some results that make you want to continue. For many people, the key to getting fit and seeing results lies in bad habits, and forcing yourself to exercise daily helps to break those habits.

3. It increases your metabolism. 

There are different theories on when you should workout in the day to achieve maximum effectiveness. A quick Google search can return results that say you should work out first thing in the morning on an empty stomach; you should workout in the middle of the day when energy levels are highest, or you should exercise at the end of the day, so you sleep better. In the end, it doesn't really matter when you work out as long as it's at a time that works for you. If you prefer working out in the morning, do it. Unless you're an elite athlete or a bodybuilder training for competitions, you don't need to worry about all the ins and outs of different chemical levels in your body at different times of the day. However, one thing agreed on is that exercise speeds up your metabolism so that you burn more calories throughout the day, which helps influence weight loss. Incorporating a daily workout helps you to keep up a calorie deficit throughout the day, which means less of what you eat "sticks with you" in the long run.

4. It can lead to better sleep. 

Daily exercise has been shown to lead to better sleep, in the amount of time, the deepness of the sleep, and the amount of time it takes to fall asleep. If you're struggling to sleep, you may want to look at trying to incorporate daily exercise in your routine. Exercise tires out your body, depleting energy levels, and making you sleepy. It also has the indirect effect of reducing stress, which may be affecting your sleep as well. Experiment to find out when works best for you, but some individuals can exercise close to bedtime and be unaffected. If you have issues sleeping, looking at a daily exercise routine may be a potential solution for you.

5. It can help your skin. 

Any focus on the health benefits of daily exercise automatically brings to mind improvements in strength and cardiovascular health, as well as a decreased risk for life-threatening illnesses. However, regular exercise helps to improve circulation by getting your heart pumping faster and more efficiently over the long term. Blood carries oxygen and nutrients to the cells throughout your body, including skin cells, helping them to function and stay healthy. Exercise also helps flush out cellular debris, which may affect skin conditions such as acne. While people suffering from skin conditions may have to take some care to protect themselves during exercise, the regular workouts can help blood circulate more efficiently and keep skin cells nourished and glowing.

There are countless benefits to incorporating even a short workout into a daily routine. However, the five listed above are ones that you may not have thought of when wrestling with the idea. Science has shown us that exercise is an essential component of health and that people who exercise regularly enjoy longer, more fruitful lives. While it may be difficult at first, you should try and work out every day to build good habits for the future. If you're trying to be more health-conscious, start with getting some daily exercise.
About Dr. Bikash Chowdhury:
Dr. Bikash Chowdhury is a family physician and a family man, currently working in a medical center in Ontario, Canada as well as Tillsonburg District Memorial Hospital near London, Ontario, Canada. With hard work and devotion, he graduated from Chittagong Medical College in Bangladesh and moved to Canada in 2002 with his family. After completing his two-year Residency at the University of Western Ontario, he became licensed to practice family medicine in Canada.