20 minutes of daily exercise for older adults the best way to reach your 80s

Exercising for 20 minutes a day in your 70s appears to be the best way older adults can live longer without heart problems, a new study reveals. Scientists in Italy say the moderate to vigorous physical activity reduced the risk of developing heart disease when these individuals reached their 80s.

Researchers have long known that physical activity lengthens lifespans and reduces the risk from cardiovascular disease, regardless of gender or ethnicity. Until now, however, few studies have probed whether exercise later in life can ward off heart attacks and strokes during old age.

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For the study, the team drew on information from the Progetto Veneto Anziani study of 3,099 Italians over the age of 65. Those researchers carried out initial tests including a detailed medical history, physical examination, scans, and a range of blood tests between 1995 and 1997. Scientists conducted two further assessments four and seven years later.

Older women live with more pre-existing conditions

When the study began, women were more likely than men to have more than four co-existing conditions. Osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, and chronic kidney disease were more common among women than men, while diabetes and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease were more common among men.

4 Comments

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4 responses to “20 minutes of daily exercise for older adults the best way to reach your 80s

  1. No question you are correct but to be more precise can you say what constitutes exercise? I always believed it was sufficient exercise to double the heart rate. And is it 20 minutes each day or an average of 20 minutes each day but based on more exercise three or more times a week?

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    • Hello, Paul. Thanks for your interest. I think you need to do at least 10 minutes to constitute an exercise session. That is not too onerous for us old folks. So, a couple of times a day would make the minimum. Needless to say, I try for more than just the minimum for best results.

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    • I am not sure about the doubling of your resting heart rate. Beyond my pay grade. I think you need 20 minutes each day. Hope this is helpful. You are painting with the mighty fine brush there.

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