Standing Fights Obesity

It’s well established that a sedentary existence is bad for us and that regular exercise promotes better health. Apparently, new research reveals, we don’t even have to hit the treadmill to feel better; just standing up can have significant benefits, The Washington Post reports. A five-year study of more than 7,000 adults found that people who stood for a least 25 percent of their day displayed considerably lower risk of obesity – 32 percent for men and 35 percent among women. Meanwhile, standing for half of the day reduced the likelihood of obesity among men by 59 percent, compared with 47 percent among women. It’s unclear from the data if standing directly reduces obesity risk or if people who are obese simply stand less. But the results offer another argument for logging some upright time. “Many of us have sedentary jobs and commute long hours,” says lead author Kerem Shuval (Read More)

Exercise Lowers Cancer Risk

If a healthy heart and trim waistline aren’t enough incentive, maybe a lower risk for cancer will inspire sedentary people to get moving. A new study from the National Cancer Institute shows that exercise may significantly lower the risk for 13 different forms of the disease, Time.com reports. Researchers analyzed 11 years of data on the health, diet, and activity of 1.4 million people and found that a higher level of physical exertion was associated with a 7 percent lower overall chance of developing cancer. Just a few hours of weekly exercise had a particular effect on esophageal cancer, lowering the risk for the disease by 42 percent. Working out also cut the risk for lung, kidney, stomach, and endometrial cancers by more than 20 percent and significantly reduced the likelihood that people would suffer from leukemia, colon cancer, or breast cancer. The more active people were, the more their (Read More)

How Exercise Slows Aging

If working out makes you feel younger, a new study suggests it’s no illusion- vigorous exercise can actually slow the aging process on a cellular level, turning back the clock nearly a decade. Researchers analyzed 6,000 adults based on their physical activity and biological markers of aging, Time.com reports. Most importantly, they used DNA samples to measure the length of participants’ telomeres, protein caps that protect chromosomes, like the plastic tips of shoelaces. Telomeres shrink with age – we lose bits of them every time a cell divides. “In general, people with shorter telomeres die sooner and are more likely to develop many of our chronic diseases,” says study author Larry Tucker. Taking into account risk factors such as smoking, alcohol consumption, and obesity, the researchers found people who exercised strenuously – say, running for 30 to 40 minutes five days per week – had longer telomeres. That gave them (Read More)

Exercise Prevents Alzheimer’s

A landmark study has confirmed what many neurologists have long believed: Exercise is good for the brain. Researchers analyzed data from more than 150 studies on how physical activity affects the risk for Alzheimer’s. They concluded beyond a doubt that older people who exercise regularly have a significantly lower risk of developing the progressive brain disorder than those who are inactive. The study also found that people with Alzheimer’s who keep physically active are better able to perform routine daily activities than those who are sedentary, MedicalDaily.com reports. “After evaluating all the research available,” says study author Kathleen Martin Ginis, a professor at the University of British Columbia, “our panel agrees that physical activity is a practical, economical, and accessible intervention for both the prevention and management of Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia’s.” The study’s authors recommend that older people adhere to current federal guidelines: at least 150 minutes of (Read More)

Runners Live Longer

Running for two hours a week could add about three years to your life, a new study suggests. Analyzing existing literature on the link between exercise and longevity, a research team found that running at any pace is associated with an up to 40 percent lower risk for premature death, The New York Times reports. The researchers suspect that running reduces common risk factors, including high blood pressure and extra body fat, but say it’s also possible that runners are more likely to have other healthy habits, such as eating healthfully and not smoking. For reasons that aren’t clear, the benefits of other forms of exercise, such as walking and biking, weren’t as striking, accounting for a roughly 12 percent drop in risk of early death. Overall, most people who laced up their sneakers for two hours weekly would end up running nearly six months over the course of 40 (Read More)

Motivation to Move

While everybody knows that exercise is required for optimum health, many people find it difficult to fit exercise into their busy lives. Fortunately, health professionals now know that health and fitness don’t require prolonged sessions of rigorous physical activity. In fact, most people can improve their health by incorporating a few changes into their day-to-day activities. Try one or more of these suggestions and you’ll soon start to feel more energetic and healthy. Park on the far side While running errands, always park your car as far from the place you’re visiting as possible. Not only will the extra steps help improve your health, but your car won’t be subjected to as many dings from other car’s doors. Take the stairs Whenever you have a choice, take stairs instead of an elevator. Most buildings put the elevators near the entrance, while the stairs may be harder to find. Looking for (Read More)

Research says increased physical activity reduces effect of salt on blood pressure

Living a healthy lifestyle isn’t always easy. In addition to concerns about eating healthy and exercising to lose weight, we must also consider other health concerns like high blood pressure and cholesterol. High blood pressure is particularly dangerous because it can lead to a number of life-threatening problems such as hypertension, heart attacks, and strokes. Fortunately, many of the things that work for losing weight also work for lowering blood pressure. According to a study from the American Heart Association, physical activity has a significant impact on blood pressure. This impact is particularly pronounced in individuals who consume a high-salt diet. Salt is well known to be a leading cause of high blood pressure, so individuals looking to reduce the risk of high blood pressure due to their high-salt diet are encouraged to increase their level of physical activity. However, the best way to offset the negative effects of salt (Read More)

Good Vibrations

According to the Journal of Arthritis & Rheumatism, the health of your joint cartilage is improved with vibratory motion. Vibrations allow the hyaluronic acid to be directed evenly among chondrocytes and the extracellular matrix, thus improving delivery of nutrients to chondrocytes in deeper layers and improving transportation of waste products. The average 70 kg (154 lbs) person has roughly 15 grams of hyaluronan in the body, one-third of which is turned over (degraded and synthesized) every day.