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San Angelo Standard-Times (Texas)
A study published in The American Journal of Medicine found that lifting weights is extremely valuable for adults over 50. They found that, over 18-20 weeks, older adults gained an average of 2.42 pounds of muscle and increased their strength by 25-30 percent.
Considering that the average adult can gain about 1.5 to 5 pounds of lean muscle each month, that's impressive. The researchers found that older adults who strength trained at least twice a week had 46 percent lower odds of death for any reason than those who did not.
REDUCE BREAST CANCER RISK
Women who did either moderate exercise for 2.5 hours or vigorous activity for 75 minutes a week cut their chance of dying from breast cancer by a third, per a study from Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise. Women who did about twice as much cardio lowered their risk by 55 percent.
REDUCE HIP FRACTURES
In the famous Nurses' Health Study, which has followed tens of thousands of postmenopausal women for decades, those who walked for at least four hours a week were 40 percent less likely to suffer hip fractures than those who walked less.
What we know in diabetes prevention, and in prediabetes, is that a very modest amount of weight loss has this huge reduction in risk. If you lose 7 percent of your body weight, you cut your risk of developing diabetes by 60 percent.
And, in fact, if you're over 65, it's over 70 percent. About 90 percent of people with type 2 diabetes, the most common type, are overweight or obese, per a Harvard Health report. That's the No. 1 risk factor for diabetes.
EXERCISE & HEART DISEASE
People who maintain an active lifestyle have a 45 percent lower risk of developing heart disease than do sedentary people. If you're inactive, you have a 20 percent higher risk for having a stroke or mini-stroke than people who exercise at a moderate pace at least four times a week.
DID YOU KNOW?
One out of every three people over 65 falls every year in the U.S. More than 95 percent of hip fractures are caused by falling. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related visits to emergency departments.
One of the biggest factors that determines how well you age is not your genes but how well you live. Not convinced?
A study published in the British Medical Journal of 20,000 British folks shows that you can cut your risk of having a stroke in half by doing the following four things: being active for 30 minutes a day, eating five daily servings of fruit & veggies, and avoiding cigarettes & excess alcohol.
HEART ATTACK FACT
As many as 20 percent of people hospitalized with a heart attack are depressed. And, patients with heart disease have three times the risk of developing depression compared with the general population.
INCREASE YOUR BONE DENSITY
Bones last longer if you stress them more. Exercising -- putting the weight of your body or an outside weight on the bone -- makes it lay down more bone material to strengthen it. Ideally, several times a week you need aerobic, weight bearing, and resistance exercise.
INACTIVITY & DEPRESSION
Women who sat for more than seven hours a day were found to have a 47 percent higher risk of depression than women who sat for four hours or less per day.
Those who didn't participate in any physical activity at all had a 99 percent higher risk of developing depression than women who exercised.
EXERCISE BOOSTS BRAIN HEALTH
Exercise increases brain cell activity, vascular function, and boosts brain health. One study that followed more than 600 seniors, starting at age 70, found that those who engaged in the most physical exercise showed the least amount of brain shrinkage over a follow-up period of three years.
Janet Charlesworth is operations manager for the San Angelo Community Health Club.
Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
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