Here’s how your regular at-home workouts can help you pack a punch against covid-19

While exercising regularly might seem like a difficult preventative measure, it can help your body fight off a covid-19 infection better.
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It's time combat covid-19 with yoga or some cardio ladies. Image Courtesy: Shutterstock
Team Health Shots Published: 16 Apr 2020, 17:48 pm IST
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Doing a workout can certainly leave you breathless but it may reduce the risk of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), a major cause of death in patients with covid-19. 

Thankfully, exercise is your real answer as an effective precaution against covid-19. A review by researcher Zhen Yan from the University of Virginia in the US suggests that medical research findings “strongly support” the possibility that exercise can prevent or at least reduce the severity of ARDS, which affects between 3% and 17% of all patients with covid-19.

How can doing regular exercise prevent us from getting covid-19?
Our bodies naturally produce antioxidants that potently hunts down harmful free radicals, protecting our tissues and helping to prevent disease.

“Our findings of an endogenous antioxidant enzyme provide important clues and have intrigued us to develop a novel therapeutic for ARDS caused by covid-19,” Yan said.

The study compiled an in-depth review of existing medical research and re-reviewed his own, looking at an antioxidant known as “extracellular superoxide dismutase” (EcSOD).

Interestingly, it was found that our muscles naturally make EcSOD, secreting it into the blood circulation to allow binding to other vital organs. The production of EcSOD is enhanced by cardiovascular exercise. Therefore, exercise can actually help in safeguarding and replenishing disease-fighting antioxidants.


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Even a single session of exercise increases the production of the antioxidant making it a vital practice in the times we need it the most. Therefore, Yan urges everyone to keep exercising even while social distancing.

Also, Read: Hot damn! This handstand T-shirt challenge is going viral and it’s no easy feat

What happens when there is a decrease in antioxidants?
A pattern of decreased antioxidants was found when patients with several diseases such as acute lung disease, ischemic heart disease, and kidney failure were reviewed. 

In lab research done on mice, it was found that blocking antioxidant’s production worsens heart problems while increasing it has a beneficial effect on the body.

Also, a significant decrease in EcSOD is also associated with chronic conditions such as osteoarthritis, the research suggested.

Going back to the threat of developing acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) which is known to be a major covid-19 death cause, is a common symptom patients have.

Also, Read: For the sake of your immunity, please don’t let go of your fitness regimen. Even in this lockdown

How likely are people to have ARSD?
According to the information available by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, it was estimated that 20% to 42% of patients hospitalized for COVID-19 will develop ARDS.

In research conducted prior to the pandemic, it was suggested that approximately 45 % of patients who develop severe ARDS will die.

Prevention is better than cure
While social distancing is likely to give us all cabin fever and make us feel unmotivated to workout, this research might help you become conscious of the phenomenal impact that exercise can have on your body’s prevention system. 

“We cannot live in isolation forever, regular exercise has far more health benefits than we know. The protection against this severe respiratory disease condition is just one of the many examples,” he said.

Also, Read: Covid-19 aftermath: Experts say its impact on your mental health will last for a long time

So, ladies even while your doing work from home, take out conscious time in your day’s schedule and just start exercising regularly. Just as washing hands and social distancing are significant precautions against covid-19, make exercising a preventative priority too. 

(With inputs from IANS)

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