The Amount Of Exercise That Keeps You Out Of Hospital

As little exercise as this keeps you fit and out of hospital.

As little exercise as this keeps you fit and out of hospital.

For people over 40, doing just 20 minutes of exercise a day will keep you fit and prevent hospital admission for some years to come.

A study on 81,717 UK adults reveals that those who exercise regularly are at a lower risk of hospitalization from many health issues henceforward.

They found that 20 minutes of regular exercise will cut the risk of hospitalization in adults over 40 by 23 percent.

Increased physical activity including moderate-to-vigorous intensity exercise was very effective in reducing odds of hospitalization for 9 common illness.

These common conditions were iron deficiency anaemia, urinary tract infections (UTIs), colon polyps, gallbladder disease, venous thromboembolism, diverticular disease, diabetes, ischemic stroke, and pneumonia.

The likelihood of diabetes, urinary tract infections, and gallbladder disease was at lowest level among people who performed exercise every day.

This suggests that exercise not only keeps the heart healthy, make us slimmer and fitter but also provides many other health benefits.

According to physical activity guidelines, adults should be active and move more during the day.

They should do at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as brisk walking, or 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous intensity exercise, such as running, swimming, or cycling uphill during the week.

20 minutes a day

The study examined the link between levels of physical activity and the risk of admission to hospital.

Participants’ physical activity was recorded while they wore an accelerometer on the wrist for one week in 2013 and 2015 with a 7-year follow up.

During this period, 48,560 participants were taken into hospital for a number of reasons.

The results showed that adults of all ages who exercised at least 20 minutes a day were more likely to avoid hospital.

Moderate to intense physical activity was associated with decreased risk of hospitalization for those identified 9 conditions, ranging from 4 percent for colon polyps to 23 percent for diabetes.

Dr Eleanor Watts, the study’s first author, said:

“Studies show that physical activity can improve immune function, lung and heart health, insulin sensitivity and reduce inflammation.

Physical activity also can reduce body fat, high blood pressure and cholesterol.”

Benefits of exercise

Past studies suggest that physical activity is the best “prescription” and should be the first treatment option for lowering blood cholesterol and hypertension.

Research has found that the best way to maintain weight loss in the long-term is through more exercise rather than less food.

Even simple exercise such as fast walking helps burn more calories but more importantly increases longevity and lowers the risk of early death from heart disease.

Psychological benefits of exercise include fighting depression and anxiety, increasing stress resilience, speeding up the mind and much more.

Professor Chip Lavie, a cardiologist, said;

“Moderate-to-vigorous is a fairly broad range… a daily jog may bring bigger benefits than walking your dog.

Plus, the amount of exercise a person needs varies with the ultimate goal: If you want to lose weight, the more calories you burn, the better.

But the main message is that almost any physical activity is better than inactivity.”

Experts say that people don’t need to push for routine running workouts, any plan for healthy living is a good plan.

Even if a person has been physically inactive for a long time, it is still better late than never.

The study was published in JAMA Network Open (Watts et al., 2023).

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