Exercise

Free miracle cure! Reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer by up to 50%! If there was a pill with these sort of success rates people would be queuing up to buy them. But why stand in a queue? Just walk around briskly and take some exercise and that's the sort of health benefits you can expect.

As a bonus it can also improve your sleep quality, give you more energy and reduce the risk of mental health diseases such as depression, dementia and Alzheimer’s.

And it doesn't have to be pumping iron down the gym. Regular movement is just a important - so if you commute, walk quickly to the train or bus and keep adding those minutes up throughout the day. Sedentary jobs and lifestyles are a big killer.

You need a balance of regular movement as well as muscle gain (resistance training) and aerobic exercise - plenty of walking is good but you also need a couple of sessions of vigorous (i.e. make you breath hard) exercise for the biggest benefits.

Notes:

  • recreational exercise is not associated with increased osteoarthritis - but high impact forces and twisting motions do
  • Thinning of shock-absorbing cartilage is a key feature of ageing but physical activity appears to reduce this thinning

It's Never Too Late To Start Exercising

Total mortality after changes in leisure time physical activity in 50 year old men - Byberg et al
Increased physical activity in middle age is eventually followed by a reduction in mortality to the same level as seen among men with constantly high physical activity.

Resources

Benefits of exercise - NHS
up to a 35% lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke
up to a 50% lower risk of type 2 diabetes
up to a 50% lower risk of colon cancer

The Body’s Fuel Sources - Human Kinetics
An excerpt from Endurance Sports Nutrition, Third Edition by Suzanne Girard Eberle.
Great summary of the how and when the body uses carbohydrate, protein, and fat.

23 and 1/2 hours: What is the single best thing we can do for our health? - DocMikeEvans (YouTube)
Full of useful information in an easy to absorb presentation.

Non-vigorous physical activity and all-cause mortality: systematic review and meta-analysis of cohort studies. - Woodcock, Franco, Orsini, Roberts
Compared with no activity, moderate activity reduces your mortality risk:
by 19% for 2.5 hours/week activity
by 24% for 7 hours per week activity

Read more about: Sedentary Behaviour.

Recent News

Lack of exercise puts one in four people at risk

BBC - 05-Sep-2018

25% of people worldwide are not doing enough physical exercise.

Activity increases healthspan in older adults

News Medical - 23-Jul-2018

1,500 Australians aged over 50 followed for 10 years.

Heavy physical work linked to earlier death in men

NHS - 15-May-2018

Physical activity assessed by questionnaire or wearing a device.