Even 30 Minutes of Low-Intensity Exercise Could Extend Lifespan

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Even 30 minutes of low-intensity exercise could extend lifespan. People spend hours sitting down. Now, a new study suggests that even short regular movement is associated with longer life.

People who spend hours sitting are more likely to experience negative health problems. However, researchers have found that short movements can have a most important impact on lifespan. They suggest that even just 30 minutes of a small amount of regular exercise may reduce the risk of premature death.

In the research, Keith Diaz, an assistant professor of behavioral medicine at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York City, NY, studied 7,999 people aged 45 and more. The study was published in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

These participants were asked to wear an activity monitor to track their daily physical activity and intensity of these activities. The researchers found that even 30 minutes of small movements may cut a person’s death risk by 17 percent.

“Our findings underscore an important public health message that physical activity of any intensity provides health benefits,” states Diaz.

Additionally, this research provides a way to reduce the risk of those who can’t follow a vigorous exercise routine.

Diaz says, “If you have a job or lifestyle that involves a lot of sitting, you can lower your risk of early death by moving more often, for as long as you want and as your ability allows — whether that means taking an hour-long high-intensity spin class or choosing lower-intensity activities, like walking.”

Now, researchers are looking for a link between low-intensity exercise and impact on specific cardiovascular outcomes, such as heart failure, heart attack, and other cardiovascular-related deaths.