A good workout will do much more than just keep you fit

Interaction between hormones and exercise

Did you know that your muscles produce hormone-like molecules called myokines?

With every muscle contraction these myokines talk to your muscles, fat cells, liver, pancreas, bone, heart, immune cells and brain and thereby create changes in a whole range of body functions.

Myokines, by changing the activity and hormone production in several organs can affect metabolism, tissue repair and regeneration, immune health and much more.

In other words, a good ’workout’ will do much more than just keep you fit.

Hormones affected by training:

  • Irisin (a myokine) – increases, which can change fat cell type from white fat to brown fat, which burns more calories. Irisin also increases bone growth and there are studies suggesting that Irisin protects against brain damage.
  • Testosterone – increases and thereby muscle and bone growth, repair and strength and has a positive effect on mood
  • Estrogen – decreases and thereby bringing an improvement in some of its negative effects, such as heavy bleeds, tender breast tissue, PMT-symptoms, breast / uterine cancers, etc.
  • Human Growth Hormone / HGH – increases and thereby its fat burning, muscle and bone building / repairing affects
  • Insulin – decreases to allow for glucose release from glycogen and fat burning. Therefore, it is advisable to avoid sugar, including sports drinks before training as they increase insulin which promotes glycogen storage and not its breakdown to release glucose.
  • Glucagon – increases and thereby the release of fatty acids from fat tissue and glucose from glycogen
  • Insulin-like-growth-factor/IGF – increases, which supports the effects of HGH
  • Brain-Derived-Neurotrophic-Factor/BDNF – increases, which increases the growth of new brain cells
  • IL-6 – (produced in muscle cells) increase, and are anti-inflammatory.

The absolute best hormone results are achieved with H.I.I.T training/High-Intensity-Interval-Training, where endurance training can easily create imbalances on hormone production, which can lead to excessive tissue breakdown and increased inflammation.

So related to health, slow-aging and strength short and hard training is ’smart training’ for your hormones.

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