Residing wholesome in center age reduces the danger of well being issues in previous age

Live well, live longer.

New research provides further evidence that the mantra is true: People who exercised regularly and followed a healthy diet in middle age were less at risk of serious health problems than seniors.

“Health professionals could use these results to further teach and highlight the benefits of a healthy diet and regular exercise regimen to their patients to avoid the development of numerous chronic health conditions in present and later life,” said study author Vanessa Xanthakis, assistant professor of medicine and biostatistics in the Department of Preventive Medicine and Epidemiology at Boston University School of Medicine.

Her team analyzed long-term data from nearly 2,400 Americans in a large ongoing U.S. health study to determine how closely they followed U.S. government dietary and physical activity guidelines.

The physical activity guidelines advocate at least 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous physical activity per week, such as walking or swimming.

The adults in the study averaged 47 years old between 2008 and 2011, and were of older age in 2016-2019.

Middle-aged 28% of adults followed both physical activity and diet guidelines, while 47% followed only one of the guidelines.

Compliance with middle-aged physical activity and diet guidelines was associated with a lower likelihood of developing metabolic syndrome and other serious health conditions later in life, according to the study published Wednesday in the Journal of the American Heart Association.

“The sooner people make these lifestyle changes, the more likely they are to lower their risk of cardiovascular disease later in life,” Xanthakis said in a press release.

Metabolic syndrome is a collection of health conditions – including excess fat around the waist, high blood pressure, insulin resistance, high blood sugar, abnormal cholesterol or triglyceride levels – that increase the risk of heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.

The risk of metabolic syndrome was 51% lower in those who followed the physical activity recommendations alone, 33% lower in those who followed the diet alone, and 65% in those who followed both guidelines.

All of the adults in the study were white, so the results cannot be generalized to other races and ethnic groups and more studies are needed that include a range of races and ethnic groups, the researchers said.

More information

The American Academy of Family Physicians offers resources for healthy living.

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