A Few Weeks Off My Training Programme Won’t Affect Me That Much – Will It?
We all know that exercise is important for your health. Getting sweaty and active helps with physical and mental health. It also improves brain functions, boosts energy levels and helps make sure you feel good. There is even proof that regular exercise can extend your life and make a big difference in your liver health.
Exercise and liver health
There are two ways why an active lifestyle is linked to good liver health:
- 70% of people with obesity have high liver fat, whilst 30% of those who are slim have high liver fat. When too many fat cells build up around the liver, it can cause swelling and damage to the surrounding area. The good news is that losing weight and living a healthier lifestyle with more exercise can help improve liver health and will often reverse the damage done.
- Studies have also identified certain types of exercises that are more effective when lowering fat in the liver. Resistance and aerobic training can greatly impact this type of fat reduction, regardless of current weight. Studies of those who fall into the obese category have found that those who are inactive are much more likely to develop a liver condition than others who weigh similarly but are more active.
Resistance and aerobic training
Most of us will benefit from resistance or aerobic training – and there is now proof that these activities can be especially effective in terms of liver health. Studies have found that an activity programme based on these tends to decrease the fat stored in liver cells, regardless of whether there is any actual weight loss. One research found that individuals on a training programme of between 30 and 60 minutes per day of this type of activity, five days a week, achieved 10% less liver fat. It was interesting that this was achieved even though their weight stayed the same. In another study, people taking part in a 12-week High Intensity Interval Training programme lost nearly 39% of liver fat.
Can you take time off your training programme?
The short answer is: this will depend on you and your training programme. Any active lifestyle should allow for rest and time off. However, it’s important to note how this can affect the progress that you’re making in terms of exercise and liver problems. You may need to make up for taking a bit of time off with other exercises – or to keep the training, but at a lower level of effort. Remember that there are lots of different activities that count in the aerobic category, from dancing to tennis, cycling and swimming – and resistance training could be free weights, weighted machines or medicine balls.
Exercise is key to ongoing liver health – and reducing fat already piled up in the liver.