Thursday August 16, 2018

Growing Old? Enjoy Life to Stay Fit

People with low well-being were more than three times as likely as their positive counterparts to develop problems in their daily physical activities

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Growing Old? Enjoy Life to Stay Fit
Growing Old? Enjoy Life to Stay Fit. Pixabay
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Enjoying life as you grow old not only makes you happy, it also helps you walk faster and stay fit.

Older people who enjoy life more show slower declines in physical function as they age in comparison with people who enjoy life less, says a study.

“Our research shows that older people enjoying life are less likely to develop impairments in activities of daily living such as dressing or getting in or out of bed, and their walking speed declines at a slower rate than those who enjoy life less,” said Andrew Steptoe from University College London (UCL), Britain.

A study of 3,199 men and women aged 60 years or over looked at the link between positive well-being and physical well-being – following participants over eight years.

Researchers assessed participants’ enjoyment of life with a four-point scale: “I enjoy the things that I do”, “I enjoy being in the company of others”, “On balance, I look back on my life with a sense of happiness” and “I feel full of energy these days”.

Representational image.
Representational image. Pixabay

“Our results provide further evidence that enjoyment of life is relevant to the future disability and mobility of older people,” Steptoe added.

Participants in the 60-69-year bracket had higher levels of well-being as did those with higher socio-economic status and education and those who were married and working.

Not surprisingly, people with chronic illnesses such as heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, stroke and depression had lower levels of enjoyment of life, the study noted.

Also Read: Good Heart Health Prevents Frailty in Old Age

People with low well-being were more than three times as likely as their positive counterparts to develop problems in their daily physical activities.

Efforts to enhance well-being at older ages may have benefits to society and health care systems, said the study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal. (IANS)

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According to Researchers, Exercising 4-5 Times a Day Delays Ageing

Want to stay young for long? If so, start exercising four to five times a day as it may help keep your heart stay healthy and slow down ageing, according to researchers.

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Exercise, representational image . IANS

Want to stay young for long? If so, start exercising four to five times a day as it may help keep your heart stay healthy and slow down ageing, according to researchers.

Research showed that different sizes of arteries are affected differently by varying amounts of exercise.

While exercising for about two to three days a week for about 30 minutes may be sufficient to minimise stiffening of middle-sized arteries, exercising for about four to five days a week is required to keep the larger central arteries youthful.

The study would help “develop exercise programmes to keep the heart youthful and even turn back time on older hearts and blood vessels”, said one of the study authors, Benjamin Levine from the University of Texas.

With age, arteries — which transport blood in and out of the heart — become prone to stiffening, increasing the risk of heart diseases.

For the study, published in The Journal of Physiology, the team examined 102 people over 60 years old, with a consistent lifelong exercise history.

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Exercise alone is not enough to keep you in shape. You will have to do a few more extra things before and after your workout to stay fit! Pixabay

The participants were divided into four groups depending on their exercise history — Sedentary: less than 2 exercise sessions per week; Casual Exercisers: 2-3 exercise sessions per week; Committed Exercisers: 4-5 exercise sessions per week and Masters Athletes: 6-7 exercise sessions per week.

A lifelong history of casual exercise (two-three times a week) resulted in more youthful middle-sized arteries, which supply oxygenated blood to the head and neck.

However, committed exercisers (4-5 times per week) also had more youthful large central arteries, which provide blood to the chest and abdomen, in addition to healthier middle-sized ones.

Also Read: Drinking Water Boosts Mental Skills in Elders Who Exercise

Larger arteries need more frequent exercise to slow down ageing, the researchers said.

The findings will help see “if we can reverse the ageing of a heart and blood vessels by using the right amount of exercise at the right time”, Levine explained. (IANS)

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