Regular physical activity has a lot of beneficial effects on heart and blood vessels.
Regular exercise can bring down the levels of LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) and increase the levels of HDL cholesterol (good cholesterol) which has a protective effect
Relief of obesity is another advantage which also leads to an improvement in the effect of insulin in the body. Generalized inflammatory state also improves with regular exercise training, mediated through decreased fat as fat cells are proinflammatory.
Important psychological benefits of exercise include improvement in stress and depression. Social support is better with exercise programs.
Regular exercise reduces adhesiveness of platelets, the blood cells involved in blood clotting. Mechanisms to dissolve clots improve, levels of fibrinogen, a blood protein which induces clot formation decreases and so does blood viscosity. All these have favourable effect against unwanted clotting.
Beneficial effects on heart rhythm include reduction in resting heart rate and decreased activity of the sympathetic nervous system which gets triggered with stress. These are beneficial in reducing life threatening heart rhythm abnormalities in those with established heart disease.
Long term exercise programs reduce oxygen demand of heart muscle, though immediate effect of exercise is an increased oxygen demand of the heart muscle. Blood flow to the heart muscle also improves.