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Three More Good Reasons To Exercise

Friday, October 29, 2010 // Uncategorized

10/9/2008 12:00:00 AM

There are not many things that exercise doesn’t help prevent.  The following are some good illustrations of this.

Running Associated with Less Disability, Improved Survival at Older Ages <br>Running offers quality-of-life and survival benefits through middle and older age, reports Archives of Internal Medicine. <br>Researchers enrolled some 540 adults aged 50 or older who were members of a running club and 420 healthy controls. Questionnaires were sent to participants each year, with about half of the runners and a third of the controls responding at year 21. <br>Disability scores increased with time in both groups, but after adjustment for confounders (including other aerobic exercise), scores remained lower among runners than controls at all points. In addition, runners were significantly less likely than controls to die during follow-up (15% vs. 34%). <br>The authors write: “Our findings … support recommendations to encourage moderate to vigorous physical activity at all ages. Increasing healthy lifestyle behaviors may not only improve length and quality of life but also hopefully lead to reduced health care expenditures associated with disability and chronic diseases.” <br>Archives of Internal Medicine article (Free abstract; full text requires subscription) <br>Olympic marathon winners (Free)

Physical Activity May Boost Cognitive Function in Older Adults <br>Older adults at risk for Alzheimer disease may see modest improvement in cognitive function through regular physical activity, JAMA reports. <br>Some 170 people aged 50 or older with memory impairment were randomized to regular physical activity (three 50-minute sessions of moderate-intensity exercise per week) or usual care for 24 weeks. The intervention group received information on exercise and goal-setting through a workshop, a manual, and newsletters, plus phone calls to monitor progress. <br>At 18 months’ follow-up, patients in the exercise group had slightly higher cognition scores and better delayed recall than controls. (They also exercised some 2 hours more per week.) <br>An editorialist writes: “If exercise is protective and if its effects can be sustained, presumably with minimal adverse effects and costs, then it becomes an attractive option and perhaps a key strategy to help reduce cognitive morbidity in an increasingly aging society.” <br>JAMA article (Free) <br>JAMA editorial (Subscription required)

High BMI, Hyperinsulinemia Associated with Prostate Cancer Mortality <br>Being overweight, having hyperinsulinemia, or — especially — having both increases the risk for death in men with prostate cancer, researchers report online in Lancet Oncology. <br>In the prospective, 24-year Physicians’ Health Study, some 2500 men developed prostate cancer. In adjusted analyses, those who were overweight or obese at baseline had a higher risk for dying of prostate cancer than did normal-weight men (hazard ratios, 1.5 and 2.7, respectively). Separately, those with the highest quartile of baseline C-peptide concentration (a marker of insulin secretion) had higher prostate cancer mortality than those in the lowest quartile (HR, 2.4). Patients with both factors had four times the risk compared to men with neither factor. <br>The authors suggest that the tumors may progress via insulin growth factor receptors. <br>Lancet Oncology article (Free abstract; full text requires subscription)
Bottom line:  Exercise helps you live longer, helps your brain live longer.  People who are larger, who have a higher BMI (Body Mass Index), may not  survive from prostate cancer as well as smaller people.  Not everyone can be the ideal weight, but almost everyone can do some form of exercise.

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