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Longevity: The simple exercise that lowers risk of mortality by 70% – and it costs nothing

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Exercise is an easy sell: it lifts your mood and provides a buffer against chronic disease. Getting active has been shown to reduce the risk of diabetes, heart disease and cancer, to name a few. What’s more, you don’t have to break the bank or engage in high-impact sports to reap the benefits, a new study suggests.

Adults taking at least 7,000 steps per day, compared with those taking fewer than 7,000 steps per day, had approximately 50 percent to 70 percent lower risk of mortality.

In this cohort study of 2110 adults with a mean follow-up of 10.8 years, participants taking at least 7,000 steps per day, compared with those taking fewer than 7000 steps per day, had a 50 percent to 70 percent lower risk of mortality.

There was no association of step intensity with mortality regardless of adjustment for step volume.

In their concluding remarks, the researchers noted that higher daily step volume was associated with a lower risk of premature all-cause mortality among Black and white middle-aged women and men.

“There was no association of step intensity with mortality,” they added.

Key dietary tips

In addition to engaging in regular exercise, it is also important to eat a healthy, balanced diet.

This means eating a wide variety of foods in the right proportions, and consuming the right amount of food and drink to achieve and maintain a healthy body weight.

“Fruit and vegetables are a good source of vitamins and minerals and fibre, and should make up just over a third of the food you eat each day,” notes the NHS.

According to the health body, it’s recommended that you eat at least five portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day. They can be fresh, frozen, canned, dried or juiced.

There’s evidence that people who eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables a day have a lower risk of heart disease, stroke and some cancers.

Eating five portions is not as hard as it sounds.

A portion is:

  • 80g of fresh, canned or frozen fruit and vegetables
  • 30g of dried fruit – which should be kept to mealtimes
  • 150ml glass of fruit juice or smoothie – but do not have more than one portion a day as these drinks are sugary and can damage teeth.



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