Thursday August 22, 2019

Exercise Cuts Risk of Chronic Disease in Older Adults

For the study, the researchers interviewed more than 1,500 Australian adults aged over 50 and followed them over a 10-year period

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Some older adults may not be able to engage in vigorous activity or high levels of physical activity
Some older adults may not be able to engage in vigorous activity or high levels of physical activity. Pixabay

Older adults who exercise above the current recommended levels may have a reduced risk of developing chronic disease as compared to those who do not exercise, a new study has found.

The findings suggested that people who engaged in the highest levels of total physical activity were twice as likely to avoid stroke, heart disease, angina, cancer and diabetes, and be in optimal physical and mental shape 10 years later.

Older adults who did more than 5,000 metabolic equivalent minutes (MET minutes) each week saw the greatest reduction in the risk of chronic disease, suggested the study published in the journal Nature Scientific Reports.

“Some older adults may not be able to engage in vigorous activity or high levels of physical activity,” said lead author Bamini Gopinath, Associate Professor at the University of Sydney.

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Old couple running. Pixabay

“But we encourage older adults who are inactive to do some physical activity, and those who currently only engage in moderate exercise to incorporate more vigorous activity where possible,” Gopinath added.

Currently, the World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends at least 600 MET minutes of physical activity each week. That is equivalent to 150 minutes of brisk walking or 75 minutes of running, the researchers mentioned.

“Our findings suggest that physical activity levels need to be several times higher than what the WHO currently recommends to significantly reduce the risk of chronic disease,” said Gopinath.

Also Read: Why Exercise on Empty Stomach May Be Better For Your Health

For the study, the researchers interviewed more than 1,500 Australian adults aged over 50 and followed them over a 10-year period.

“Our study showed that high levels of physical activity increase the likelihood of surviving an extra 10 years free from chronic diseases, mental impairment and disability,” Gopinath noted. (IANS)

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Exercise More for Better Fitness After Retirement: Study

While retirement can free up time, deteriorating health and wellbeing often become a new barrier. That is why it is so important to maintain fitness in the lead up to retirement

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Good habits
Exercising regularly can keep your brain healthy. VOA

Middle-aged people over 55 years of age in particular should be doing more to keep fit as they approach retirement age because of the physical, mental and social benefits of being active, says a study.

“Adults are spending more years of their life working than ever before. Retiring is a life-changing event which provides all sorts of opportunities – but it coincides with declining physical activity, health and wellbeing,” said the study’s lead author Charlotte Salter from the University of East Anglia in England.

“From the age of around 55, people begin thinking about retirement and making plans for their future,” Salter said.

For the study, researchers worked to gather insight about the relationship between retirement and physical activity.

More than 1,000 over-55s took part in an online ‘Physical Activity and Retirement Transitions’ survey about their physical activity levels and expectations and experiences of retirement.

The research team also held focus groups and interviews with people at retirement age about staying physically active.

evening exercise, workout
Evening exercise increases whole-body energy expenditure for an extended period of time. Pixabay

“In order to enjoy a fit and healthy retirement, a really key thing is that people need to maintain their physical fitness through their fifties and beyond.

“But we found that there are many barriers to this – from poor health, lack of motivation and the cost and availability of sports, activities and fitness classes, to not having enough time – due to work or in many cases because of caring responsibilities,” Salter added.

The report showed how employers and healthcare providers could do more to promote physical fitness to people over 55. And that sports centres and community fitness projects could also play more of a part in encouraging healthy ageing.

Also Read: FlowerAura’s Fascinating Way To Celebrate Raksha Bandhan in 2019

While retirement can free up time, deteriorating health and wellbeing often become a new barrier. That is why it is so important to maintain fitness in the lead up to retirement.

“There is no one-size-fits all approach. But we found that activity that is combined with socialising, or other purposeful actions such as dog walking, gardening, housework, childcare or volunteering, were all good ways for over-55s to remain active,” she added. (IANS)