There are two primary reasons to do aerobic exercise. The first and more important reason is that aerobics condition and maintains the cardiovascular system. The number one cause of death in the United States is cardiovascular disease, and although a lack of exercise is just part of the reason to explain the high number of deaths due to cardiovascular disease (CD), it is a large part of the equation. One reason for this is that the heart is basically a muscle, albeit a highly specialized muscle. The muscle cells in the heart fall into their own category, with the other two types of muscle tissue being striated muscle, as in the muscles contracted when you lift weights, and smooth muscle, such as that lining the blood vessels, which plays a major role in blood pressure control. Having optimal cardiovascular health is a key factor in healthy aging, and scientists often say that if the cardiovascular system is in good shape, so is the brain. Recent research shows that engaging in regular aerobic training maintains the length of telomeres in the heart. Telomeres are the "strings" on the end of cell chromosomes, and they shorten every time a cell divides or renews itself. When the telomeres start to get short, cellular aging is initiated. When they disappear altogether, cell senescence begins. A senescent cell no longer divides but isn't dead because it continues to release various inflammatory substances that collectively lead to systemic inflammation, which is the core of a multitude of negative health problems, including cardiovascular and brain diseases.By helping to maintain telomere length, aerobic exercise helps to literally keep you young at heart.
Aerobics do more to preserve cardiovascular health than merely training heart muscle fibers. Aerobics will raise levels of protective high-density lipoprotein (HDL) that works to remove excess cholesterol from the blood and transport it back to the liver, where the cholesterol is degraded into bile salts and then eliminated from the body. Aerobics will also lower levels of low-density lipoprotein or LDL, which is associated with a high risk of cardiovascular disease when oxidized. As noted, aerobics will also help control blood pressure, which when elevated is a major risk factor for strokes. By lowering elevated blood glucose levels, aerobics will help to prevent the onset of diabetes and also reduce the rate of aging because of a process whereby excess glucose becomes incorporated into muscle tissue leading to increased aging effects, known as Advanced Glycation. Aerobic exercise, when not done to the extreme, such as several hours, will also condition the immune system, especially relevant in this age of Covid-19.
The other primary reason to do aerobics is to lose excess body fat. From a physiological standpoint, fat is burned in the . . .