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January 21, 2022

Effect of exercise and weight loss on longevity

Effect of exercise and weight loss on longevity

The new year comes with fresh beginnings and resolutions, which for many of us include a heightened exercise regime and promises to tone up and get fit.

The physical and mental benefits of a sustained and comprehensive fitness regime extend well beyond weight loss.

Such is the beneficial impact of exercise that it can directly lead to longer life.

Check out the following impact regular and sensible exercise and weight loss can have on longevity.

Exercise affects nearly every cell in the body

The Centres of Disease Control and Prevention lists the multiple benefits of regular exercise, including less depression and anxiety, sharper thinking, improved sleep, weight management, stronger bones and muscles, reduced risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancers of the breast, colon and other organs.

Studies show that exercise promotes longevity. For example, middle aged people who walk at least 7,000 steps a day are, on average, around 50 to 70 percent less likely to die of heart disease, cancer and other illnesses over the next decade compared to those who walk less often.

Amanda Paluch, the study’s author and assistant professor of kinesiology at the University of Massachusetts Amberst, reiterated the role exercise plays in preventing the onset of potentially life-threatening diseases.

“Physical activity works on multiple mechanisms within the body, and that’s how it could potentially help prevent chronic conditions and therefore also prevent early deaths.”

Longevity tips from ‘Blue Zone’ regions

Taking regular exercise isn’t the only thing we can do to help boost our longevity. Mimicking the lifestyle of people living in ‘Blue Zone’ regions – places around the globe where people regularly live to be over 100, such as Ikaria, Greece, Sardinia, Italy, and Costa Rica – could prove invaluable in our quest for a healthier, longer life.

Lifestyle traits include eating a Mediterranean-style diet, imitating mountain living, consuming herbs, taking naps, occasionally fasting, and making friends and family a priority.

Covid-19 pandemic and exercise

The impact the pandemic had on people’s penchant to exercise has been studied. According to figures from Sport England’s annual Active Live study, more than one million adults became less active between May 2020 and May 2021 and the pandemic had an “unprecedented” impact on physical activity levels In England.

Tim Hollingsworth, Sport England CEO, said: “This latest Active Lives research paints a stark but unsurprising picture of activity levels throughout England.

“The decline, which is right across the board, ties in with when coronavirus-related restrictions were introduced and access, opportunity and the capability to exercise were all massively curtailed.”

With sports centres, leisure centres and clubs having reopened and life getting back to a degree of normality, coupled with the start of a new year, people have a renewed enthusiasm for sport and fitness.

With people heading to the clubs and fitness centres with revived eagerness and optimism, it’s more important than ever that sports clubs and venues have the right insurance in place to keep everyone, including staff and clients, protected.

Get in touch with Nelson Policies at Lloyd’s for all your insurance requirements.