Running Deters Disease, Lengthens Lifespan
Regardless of speed or distance, runners tend to have lower rates of heart-disease related deaths – translating to a potential of 3 additional years of lifespan
Running is a popular leisure-time physical activity, with many of us taking a regular jog. Iowa State University (Iowa, USA), researchers observe that people who run in their spare time tend to have lower rates of heart-disease related deaths. Duck-chul Lee and colleagues studied 55,137 adults, ages 18 to 100 years (mean age 44 years), surveying the subjects about their physical activities of the past 3 months – including whether they ran (and if so, the speed, duration and frequency). Participants were followed for a mean of 15 years, during which death rates and causes were tracked. The data revealed that people who ran at all were 30% less likely to die during the study period and 45% less likely to die from cardiovascular disease, as compared to the non-runners. Moreover, runners were at a reduced risk of death even if they ran for less than 51 minutes or less than six miles per week, and even if they ran at a pace slower than six miles per hour. Writing that: “Running, even 5 to 10 min/day and at slow speeds <6 miles/h, is associated with markedly reduced risks of death from all causes and cardiovascular disease,” the study authors are hopeful that: “this study may motivate healthy but sedentary individuals to begin and continue running for substantial and attainable mortality benefits.”
Duck-chul Lee, Russell R. Pate, Carl J. Lavie, Xuemei Sui, Timothy S. Church, Steven N. Blair. “Leisure-Time Running Reduces All-Cause and Cardiovascular Mortality Risk.” J American College Cardiology, 5 August 2014.