Need twice as much exercise? A new study has surprising health implications

For years, Americans have been told by doctors and medical groups that 150 minutes of “moderate-intensity” exercise per week is the sweet spot for maximizing health and longevity. This recommendation, which the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends as ideal on their website and in their literature, equates to 5.5 hours of exercise per week. The reason more exercise isn’t advertised more is because, unlike some studies, the relationship between exercise and health benefits doesn’t appear to be on a linear scale.

Now, a new, large study casts doubt on that suggested number. In fact, twice as much exercise can have many health benefits. This suggests that millions of us who are moderately active and may consider doubling (or more) their weekly exercise time to live longer and stay healthier, following the exercise advice of our doctors.

In a recent study published in the scientific journal Circulation, scientists looked at a sample of more than 116,000 American adults divided into two groups. As the researchers followed cohort members over a 30-year period (from 1988 to 2018), the researchers analyzed leisure-time physical activity. Within this group, more than 47,000 died, and the rest sustained a wide range of health conditions during this period.

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They found that a big factor in determining how much exercise you need is the intensity of the exercise. As of 2018, the physical activity guidelines for Americans recommended at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate physical activity per week and 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous physical activity per week. If that sounds overwhelming, what do you think? You have to double it – or else you have to enter a “combination of both”.


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“Almost maximal correlation with low mortality was achieved through performance [approximately] Long-term rest is 150-300 minutes per week [vigorous physical activity]From 300 to 600 [minutes] per week of long-term vacation [moderate physical activity]or an equivalent combination of the two,” the authors of the study conclude.

The researchers say the research should be taken seriously. One of the fitness experts, Daniel Lieberman, professor of human evolutionary biology at Harvard University, described the study to Salon as “the best” on record, adding that “the findings make complete sense.”

“[Fifty] A few minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity per week is set in stone as the standard minimum recommendation, but the word “minimum” has been left in the conversation, and several studies have argued that additional physical activity—especially vigorous physical activity—is beneficial. not even more useful, – explained Lieberman. – The question has always been how much and what intensity will benefit. This study provides excellent evidence that more than 150 minutes of exercise is beneficial, especially when it’s vigorous.”

Citing his recently published book Exercise, Lieberman added that the study “also reinforces other evidence that concerns about excessive exercise are overblown.”

This news may be discouraging to people who have tried to lose weight several times and find it difficult to keep the pounds off. Scientific evidence shows that most people find it difficult to lose or lose weight, and this challenge can be frustrating for those who want to be healthy. However, even if the weight doesn’t come off as quickly or as significantly as you’d like, improving your diet and exercise habits can still benefit your health greatly.

“This study provides excellent evidence to support more than 150 minutes of evidence [per week] It’s useful when it’s especially strong.”

Lieberman made the same point.

“All these studies show that some exercise is always better than no exercise, and eventually the benefit diminishes and mixing it up is more beneficial,” Lieberman said. “Moderate aerobic activity is the cornerstone of any exercise regimen, but some degree of strength training is important as we age, and some vigorous physical activity is almost always beneficial for those who can handle it safely.” Moreover, the situation is “complicated by many factors such as age, gender, fitness, health status, previous physical activity history, and more.”

But one thing is for sure: if you focus on your health, there are no downsides.

“I would like to remind readers that this study (like most) looks at life, not health,” Lieberman explained. “Physical activity has a stronger effect on health longevity than life expectancy. In other words, physical activity reduces a person’s vulnerability to various diseases, and therefore increases health longevity and therefore life expectancy (as well as quality of life). Pay more attention to health. . “

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