Live Longer and Age Less by Exercising; Study Suggests
A 2008 British analysis has shown that maintaining aerobic fitness through middle age and beyond can delay biological ageing by up to 12 years. Not only can we live longer by incorporating a modest exercise program into our daily routine, the benefits of regular exercise can also include the reduced risk of life-threatening diseases, like cardiovascular disease, artherosclerosis, type 2 diabetes, stroke, breast cancer, high blood pressure, pancreatic cancer, osteoporosis and depression.
The study, published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, shows aerobic exercise improves the body’s oxygen consumption and its ability to generate energy, which, in turn, leads to the slowing and possible reversal of the inevitable decline of our body’s function.
“This study is particularly relevant because it shows a direct correlation between regular exercise and longer life expectancy,” said Dr. Tepper, co-author of the analysis.
The British Journal of Sports Medicine study concluded that a regular exercise program can slow or reverse the loss of aerobic fitness – typical of behaviour observed in middle-aged and retirement aged people; reducing the individual’s biological age and prolonging independence.
Dr. Tepper added that, as we age, fat mass increases and aerobic capacity and muscle mass decrease in sedentary individuals, therefore less oxygen is delivered to key organs, thus making daily exercise more difficult. Routine daily activity seems to reverse the decline and is a vital component of living longer.
More than two-thirds of Australia’s population are overweight, and millions of others with high blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes seriously need to exercise more to control their condition.
There are many benefits to exercising, including living a longer, more active and independent life, as seen by this analysis. Twelve years is a long time – and reducing your likelihood of developing some serious diseases like cardiovascular disease and diabetes with just a few minutes of exercise a day is a huge bonus.
Exercise is an invaluable tool for maintaining good health. A tool that very few clinicians or regular Australians understand.
We should all aim to complete a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise a day. And this doesn’t mean a casual stroll around the block (though this better than nothing!).
Aim to get your heart rate up by combining some brisk walking, jogging, running, swimming, bike riding – whatever you fancy. You should have trouble carrying a conversation; so if you’re easily gossiping with your friends, it’s time to move it up a step!
If you wish to optimise your health you need to do move towards about 90 minutes of cardiovascular exercise every day. This amount of exercise is only required in the “treatment phase” (until you achieve your health goals). Then you can cut back to 45 minutes three times a week to maintain your optimal levels.
It is important to include some strength training exercise in your program in addition to the cardiovascular or aerobic type training. This will complement your fitness and help provide a well rounded structural frame that will improve your overall health.
What else can I do?
As well as exercising regularly, there are a number of different steps you can take to promote a longer, healthier life.
- Know what you need. Choosing natural medicine can be a shot in the dark. We should all be taking the basics, but you really should know what your body needs. This is where the Emed consultation comes in. By completing the consultation, you will have a fully personalised guide to your specific areas of health that need addressing, and which natural medicines to take to promote optimal health. Click here to read more about the Emed consultation.
- Are you getting enough sunshine? Vitamin D plays an enormous role in our health and immunity, so if you’re not getting enough everyday, you could be putting yourself at risk. The Emed Vitamin D Level Test will give you your exact vitamin D levels, as well as a detailed supplementation schedule to correct any deficiencies. Click here for more info.
- How well do you eat? Find out how to eat, what to eat and when to eat it with our Nutrition section.
- Do you take a multivitamin? Most of us are vitamin and mineral deficient, so it’s important to supplement your diet with a good multivitamin/multimineral combination. Visit Emed’s Best Multi’s for some great products.
- How much fish do you eat? If you’re like the majority of Aussies, the answer is ‘not enough’. Omega-3’s from fish oil are pivotal for our health, so you must take an omega-3 supplement everyday. Click here to visit our list of the best and strongest fish oil supplements on the market.
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