Exercise and healthy diet extend life in elderly women
Washington: Women in their seventies who exercise and eat healthy amounts of fruits and vegetables have a longer life expectancy, a new study has found.
Researchers at the University of Michigan and Johns Hopkins University studied 713 women aged 70 to 79 years who took part in the Women`s Health and Aging Studies.
This study was designed to evaluate the causes and course of physical disability in older women living in the community.
“A number of studies have measured the positive impact of exercise and healthy eating on life expectancy, but what makes this study unique is that we looked at these two factors together,” explained lead author, Dr. Emily J Nicklett, from the University of Michigan School of Social Work.
Researchers found that the women who were most physically active and had the highest fruit and vegetable consumption were eight times more likely to survive the five-year follow-up period than the women with the lowest rates.
To estimate the amount of fruits and vegetables the women ate, the researchers measured blood levels of carotenoids—beneficial plant pigments that the body turns into antioxidants, such as beta-carotene. The more fruits and vegetables consumed, the higher the levels of carotenoids in the bloodstream.
Study participants’ physical activity was measured through a questionnaire that asked the amount of time the spent doing various levels of physical activity, which was then converted to the number of calories expended.
The women were then followed up to establish the links between healthy eating, exercise and survival rates.
The study found that women in the most active group at baseline had a 71 percent lower five-year death rate than the women in the least active group.
Women in the highest carotenoid group at baseline had a 46 percent lower five-year death rate than the women in the lowest carotenoid group.
When taken together, physical activity levels and total serum carotenoids predicted better survival.
“Given the success in smoking cessation, it is likely that maintenance of a healthy diet and high levels of physical activity will become the strongest predictors of health and longevity. Programs and policies to promote longevity should include interventions to improve nutrition and physical activity in older adults,” said Dr. Nicklett.
The study has been published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society.
More from India
More from World
More from Sports
More from Entertaiment
- PM Modi visits Lord Jagannath temple at Puri
- Boyfriend murders DU student Arzu Singh; hides body in his house for three days
- International Fleet Review: India shows off naval prowess in "Operation Demo"
- Declared unfit for employment, man invents cost-effective electric car called Pixie!
- Can comments on social media against politicians land you in jail?
- Year of the Monkey: Know how lucky you are according to Chinese calendar!
- India vs Sri Lanka 2016, 1st T20I: Squads, date, time, TV listing, live streaming
- WATCH: When PM Modi took his supporters by surprise, came to meet them standing on car's side foot step
- SSC CGL 2016 exam dates out; read the eligibility criteria, registration details
- Bangladesh scraps China-proposed deep sea port, India offers help to develop another