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Epilepsy Blog Relay: Why it’s Important to Exercise When Living With Epilepsy

This post is part of the Epilepsy Blog Relay™. Follow along all month!

Soo’s Story

My epilepsy, like so many, is not controlled. Fortunately, most of my seizures are not severe. But my quality of life is not as good as it could be. But there are some things I do that make my life better: exercise, eat well, listen to music, and play the piano.

Exercise and Epilepsy

Exercise and epilepsy–the two seem not to go together. People fear that exercising will cause seizures. In fact, regular exercise will keep you fit and improve your overall health. As long as you know your limits and take the proper precautions, such as keeping hydrated and resting as needed, you will be fine. If you are around water (e.g., swimming pool), it is always good to have a friend or family member available just in case something happens.

I’ve noticed over the last year, since I joined a circuit training class, I am feeling much better I have improved in many ways: strength, balance, and endurance. It is also a good place to share camaraderie with fellow classmates and fitness enthusiasts. Plus, the trainers make it a lot of fun.

Diet and Epilepsy

Just as important as exercise is diet. Not necessarily the ketogenic diet or Modified Atkins diet, although those are important elements in possible treatments in epilepsy. I am talking about your average, everyday healthy eating habits. Choose vegetables over chocolate chip cookies. Of course, everyone knows this. It is much harder to do because sweets are so tempting.

Find your passion

Music is another element in my life that keeps me going. I listen to different types, depending on my mood, but I mostly listen to classical music. Most people would think, That’s for the elite. It doesn’t relate to me.” You’d be surprised at how relatable it is. Classical music is often used in media very effectively. The Shawshank Redemption and The King’s Speech are great examples from the film world.

There’s another aspect to music: playing an instrument. It keeps your brain active, as well works your hand-eye coordination. I took piano lessons as a child, so I had the basics of how to play. I picked up playing the piano again just last year. I started with the beginner’s book. I surprised myself at what I could do. There’s a wonderful sense of accomplishment when you work on goals and you achieve them. I think with music, the effect is more than that, because the music itself stimulates your brain.

When you combine all these elements, I believe you will achieve some sort of happy medium. Although epilepsy is a challenge for all of us, it is good to know there is always support at Living Well With Epilepsy!

NEXT UP: Be sure to check out the next post tomorrow at https://livingwellwithepilepsy.com.

Follow Soo Ihm:
Soo writes the blog Soo’s Epilepsy Corner and is a regular contributor to Living Well With Epilepsy. She lives in Orange County, California. She enjoys traveling, and has been to Europe three times. Her next journey will be just as interesting, with the RNS.

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