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Life Expectancy and Exercise

Zoomer Report2019-9-11By: Libby Znaimer

There’s more evidence about the benefits of exercise, especially as we age. A study out of Norway finds that older men doing three hours of exercise a week lived around five years longer than those who were sedentary.

The research tracked 5700 men aged tracking 68 to 77. It found that those putting in the equivalent of six, 30-minute sessions of any intensity, were 40% less likely to have died during the 11-year study. While those who carried out vigorous exercise saw the highest benefits, even light intensity activity lowered mortality risk – However, anything less than an hour a week of light exercise had no impact.

The benefits of exercise are well-known but the experts behind the study said they were taken back by just how large the impact could be, even in later life. The report detailed that even men who were 73 years of age at start of follow-up, had five years longer than the sedentary.

The study concluded that the impact of this physical activity was as good as quitting smoking. The work only looked at men, but the researchers say the findings would apply equally to women.

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