Never too old to start…

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You are never too old to start an activity program. A study released in the Journal of the American Medical Association showed that women over age 65 may live longer and better lives if they change their activity and exercise patterns for the better.

Although there is little doubt that long term participation in physical activity or exercise can aid in the prevention of chronic disease such as diabetes and cardiosvascular disease, questions remained as to how much benefit one could get from changing their inactive ways later in life.

In the study of more than 7,500 women age 65 and over, researchers found that sedentary women who became more active during the study had a 48 percent lower risk of death from any cause than those who remained inactive.

But the ‘newly active’ didn’t just increase their chances of living longer, they also lived better. In terms of disease, the newly active group reduced their risk of heart disease by 36 percent and had a 51 percent lower risk of cancer than those who stayed sedentary.

The change in activity was not obtained by following a gym-based exercise regime (which would confer benefits of its own), but by increasing active recreational opportunities such as walking, dancing, gardening, aerobics and swimming. By starting slowly and gradually, health and well-being benfits are available for those who have no history of activity or exercise.

The moral of the story is that you can teach an old dog new tricks! The benefits of physical activity are there for anyone of any age, so be active everyday in as many ways as you can.