At Wildcat Fitness, one of our favorite health and fitness writers is Aaron Carroll of the New York Times. Besides being a really good writer, Carroll actually seems to engage the readers of his columns by listening to them and responding when a topic he’s written about touches a nerve.
For example, in 2015 Carroll wrote an article arguing that dieting was far more important than exercise for weight loss. Confused readers wrote back (some angrily) questioning how he could devalue exercise after all he and others had written on the health benefits of exercise. His reply to his critics appeared recently under the heading, “Closest Thing to A Wonder Drug? Try Exercise.”
As the title suggests, Carroll went out of his way to assure his readers not only that exercise was important, but also that, “Of all the things we as physicians can recommend for health, few provide as much benefit as physical activity.”
Carroll’s article is an easy and extremely worthwhile read for at least two reasons. First, it connects the benefits of exercise to better outcomes for nearly every serious human malady imaginable, including arthritis, back pain, high blood pressure and hypertension, high cholesterol and triglyceride levels, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, Parkinson’s, depression, diabetes, coronary heart disease and cancer.
“Many people will be surprised at how little you need to do to achieve these results,” Carroll reminds us.
Second, it’s a good article to have in your “back pocket” when you’re trying to think up reasons not to work out.