Friday January 24, 2020

Being Able to Walk Outside for Several Blocks at Leisurely Pace Plays Important Role in Living Healthy Life

Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh in the US assessed ways to measure complex walking tasks to learn more about early

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Walk, Healthy, Life
The study, published in the Journal of American Geriatrics Society, shows that being able to walk at even a slow speed is essential for these benefits, but walking too slowly may foreshadow future problems. Pixabay

Researchers have found that being able to walk outside for several blocks at a leisurely pace plays an important role in living a vibrant, healthy life and may also predict future mobility problems.

The study, published in the Journal of American Geriatrics Society, shows that being able to walk at even a slow speed is essential for these benefits, but walking too slowly may foreshadow future problems that could prevent a person from being fully mobile.

Researchers from the University of Pittsburgh in the US assessed ways to measure complex walking tasks to learn more about early, subtle changes in walking.

It was found that slow walking speed under both usual-pace and complex conditions was associated with greater risk for developing mobility disability.

Walk, Healthy, Life
Researchers have found that being able to walk outside for several blocks at a leisurely pace plays an important role in living a vibrant, healthy life and may also predict future mobility problems. Pixabay

Participants who reported having mobility disability were more likely to be female, have diabetes, be obese, have knee pain and experience breathing difficulty. They also had more symptoms of depression, researchers said.

Researchers analysed information from the Health Aging and Body Composition study which enrolled black and white adults in the US from 1997 to 1998. The 337 participants were 70 to 79 years old, and had no difficulty walking a quarter mile or climbing 10 steps without resting.

During the course of the study, participants walked on several different paths and were given several different challenges to measure their walking speed and their ability to cope with mental and physical tasks at the same time.

Researchers then followed up with participants every six months to see if they had any difficulty walking one-quarter mile due to a health or physical problem.

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Participants reported mobility problems or disabilities every year at in-person visits. By the end of the eight-year follow-up, more than half of the participants had developed mobility disability, meaning they were unable to walk one-quarter mile.

Almost 40 per cent had developed chronic mobility disability that lasted at least two years.

The researchers concluded that measuring your simple walking speed may be enough to learn whether you might be at risk for future mobility problems. (IANS)

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Here’s why You Should Drink Tea 3 Times a Week

Want to live longer? Drink tea at least 3 times a week

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Tea 3 times week
Researchers have found that drinking tea at least three times a week is linked with a longer and healthier life. Lifetime Stock

Good news for tea lovers! Researchers have found that drinking tea at least three times a week is linked with a longer and healthier life.

“Habitual tea consumption is associated with lower risks of cardiovascular disease and all-cause death,” said study first author Xinyan Wang, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences, Beijing in China.

“The favourable health effects are the most robust for green tea and for long-term habitual tea drinkers,” Wang added.

Tea week
Drinking tea three times a week is associated with lower risks of cardiovascular disease and all-cause death. Lifetime Stock

The analysis, published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, included 1,00,902 participants of the China-PAR project2 with no history of heart attack, stroke, or cancer.

Participants were classified into two groups: habitual tea drinkers (three or more times a week) and never or non-habitual tea drinkers (less than three times a week) and followed-up for a median of 7.3 years.

Habitual tea consumption was associated with more healthy years of life and longer life expectancy.

For example, the analyses estimated that 50-year-old habitual tea drinkers would develop coronary heart disease and stroke 1.41 years later and live 1.26 years longer than those who never or seldom drank tea.

Compared with never or non-habitual tea drinkers, habitual tea consumers had a 20 per cent lower risk of incident heart disease and stroke, 22 per cent lower risk of fatal heart disease and stroke, and 15 per cent decreased risk of all-cause death.

The potential influence of changes in tea drinking behaviour were analysed in a subset of 14,081 participants with assessments at two time points.

Tea 3 week
The favourable health effects are the most robust for green tea and for long-term habitual tea drinkers. Lifetime Stock

The average duration between the two surveys was 8.2 years, and the median follow-up after the second survey was 5.3 years.

Habitual tea drinkers who maintained their habit in both surveys had a 39 per cent lower risk of incident heart disease and stroke, 56 per cent lower risk of fatal heart disease and stroke, and 29 per cent decreased risk of all-cause death compared to consistent never or non-habitual tea drinkers.

“The protective effects of tea were most pronounced among the consistent habitual tea drinking group. Mechanism studies have suggested that the main bioactive compounds in tea, namely polyphenols, are not stored in the body long-term,” said study senior author Dongfeng Gu.

“Thus, frequent tea intake over an extended period may be necessary for the cardioprotective effect,” Gu added.

In a sub-analysis by type of tea, drinking green tea was linked with approximately 25 per cent lower risks for incident heart disease and stroke, fatal heart disease and stroke, and all-cause death.

However, no significant associations were observed for black tea, the study said.

According to the researchers, two factors may be at play. First, green tea is a rich source of polyphenols which protect against cardiovascular disease and its risk factors, including high blood pressure and dyslipidaemia.

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Black tea is fully fermented and during this process polyphenols are oxidised into pigments and may lose their antioxidant effects.

Second, black tea is often served with milk, which previous research has shown may counteract the favourable health effects of tea on vascular function, the study said. (IANS)