Want to live longer? Here’s an interesting fact about exercise. A research study followed over 9,750 men over the course of 5 years. A maximal exercise test was done in the beginning and at the end of the study to determine fitness levels; the findings show a strong correlation between fitness levels and mortality rates. Here is what the results showed:
- Men who were fit at the beginning and end had the lowest mortality rate
- Men who were unfit at the beginning and end had the highest mortality rate
- Specifically, there was a 44% reduction in mortality risk in the fit men compared to the unfit men
- Men who went from unfit to fit over the period of 5 years also reduced their mortality rate
- In fact, it was estimated that there was around an 8% decrease in mortality risk for every extra minute a man improved on his exercise test from the beginning of the study
So, what is the take home message? Message number one: Fitness levels can have a significant impact on how long you live and can prevent premature death. The more fit you are, the less likely you are to die of heart disease and other illnesses. Message number two: It is never too let to start exercising. Even if you haven’t been fit your entire life, starting an exercise program can still greatly reduce mortality rates and also can improve quality of life an overall well being. So, there’s no better time than today to get started with an exercise program if you aren’t already involved in one currently.
Reference: Changes in Physical Fitness and All-Cause Mortality. Journal of the American Medical Association.