Most of us are well aware of the benefits of regular exercise (certainly, regular readers of this blog should be!) While there is plenty of evidence of the the benefits of exercise for our heart and circulatory health, an interesting new study has taken this concept a bit further – it showed that older adults who are regular exercisers were not only healthier, but essentially “younger” – in other words, their bodies had the physiologic and mental attributes of someone who was younger. And, this not only included their athletic endurance, but things like mental acuity and reflexes. This study was in an unusual group of elderly folks who were fairly vigorous cyclists, but there is a good chance these findings would apply to all active elderly adults.
So while some aspects of normal “aging” may be inevitable, studies such as this show that staying active may not only make our bodies and minds feel younger, but possibly function younger! Here is a link to a nice summary of the study in the New York Times:
For some of our tips about starting and maintaining an exercise program see our previous article. And always remember, you should always check with your doctor to make sure that an exercise program is safe and beneficial for your specific health conditions.