Researchers have discovered that adopting eight healthy habits can slow down biological aging by up to 6 years, according to findings presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions 2023. These habits include maintaining a healthy weight, following a balanced diet, avoiding tobacco, getting enough sleep, managing cholesterol, blood sugar, and blood pressure, and staying physically active. Exercise, in particular, has been found to be crucial in prolonging life and improving overall health.
Dr. Borja del Pozo Cruz and Dr. Edwina Brocklesby discussed the link between exercise and longevity in the latest episode of the In Conversation podcast by Medical News Today. Dr. del Pozo Cruz’s research, published in JAMA Internal Medicine, found that a combination of moderate aerobic exercise, vigorous aerobic exercise, and strength training yielded the best results in reducing mortality risk. To reduce the risk of death from cardiovascular disease specifically, a combination of moderate physical activity, vigorous exercise, and strength training sessions was recommended.
Dr. Brocklesby, also known as “Iron Gran,” exemplified the importance of incorporating different forms of exercise into one’s routine. Participating in a triathlon involves a mix of moderate and vigorous exercise, as well as strength training. Dr. del Pozo Cruz’s previous study, published in the European Heart Journal, suggests that even just 2 minutes of vigorous exercise per day can significantly reduce the risk of death from cancer or cardiovascular events. Those who engaged in at least 60 minutes of exercise per week saw their risk halved.
However, caution is advised when it comes to physical activity related to work or chores, as recent research has found a link between physically demanding occupations and a higher risk of cognitive impairment. Jobs in nursing, care, retail, and farming were particularly associated with this risk. Considering the potential impact of exercise on physical health, such as joint integrity, is important, especially as one gets older. Consulting a healthcare provider who can provide personalized advice on the best forms of exercise is highly recommended.
To learn more about the different forms of exercise and how they contribute to longevity, as well as Dr. Brocklesby’s inspiring journey as “Iron Gran,” listeners are encouraged to tune in to the full podcast episode available on various streaming platforms.