Midlife Fitness Reduces Chronic Disease
Midlife fitness is known to have a lot of health benefits already – and the latest is that it can lessen the impact of chronic disease in later life, according to new research.
A study conducted at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center found that 50-year-old men who were very fit had a sharply decreased risk of developing serious health problems like diabetes, stroke, congestive heart failure and Alzheimer’s. Women had similar results, the researchers said in the study, which was published online in the “Archives of Internal Medicine.”
Although it’s been repeatedly proven that hypertension and obesity are risk factors for poor health in midlife, the benefits of physical fitness have not been as certain.
“We’ve determined that being fit is not just delaying the inevitable, but it is actually lowering the onset of chronic disease in the final years of life,” Dr. Jarett Berry, assistant professor of internal medicine and senior author of the study, said in a statement.
The study examined data from 18,670 participants in the Cooper Center Longitudinal Study, comparing both their level of fitness in midlife and the number of Medicare claims they filed from age 75 to 85.