Active Lifestyle Counters Aging

Want to live longer? Turns out, you may already be doing something good for yourself by being active and in turn lengthening your life. According to researchers in a new study, women who maintain an active lifestyle live longer lives than those who led a sedentary lifestyle.

Seems to make sense to me, stay active and live longer. The old adage of “use it or lose it” certainly comes to mind!

I’m 85 years young and I don’t believe in slowing down physically or mentally. Staying active keeps you sharp, going strong and apparently also increases your life too. It’s a win-win, if you ask me!

In fact, the study points out women who sit for more than 10 hours a day with little physical activity have cells that are actually biologically older…8 years older to be exact. That is a significant different, isn’t it? It appears low activity levels can accelerate biological aging by that much! 8 years is a very long time.

So, the next time you feel like “vegging out” in front of the TV or hibernating inside this winter, think again. Go take a walk or hike instead. That choice may impact not only your short-term health, but also your longevity.

Women who sit for long periods of time – think office workers for example – who were physically active for 30 minutes per day as recommended didn’t see the same results as their sedentary counterparts. Those women did not have the same results.

The benefits of exercise and being physically active is important over the course of one’s life, not just as we age, and should continue as we age.

The study was comprised of nearly 1,500 women aged 64 to 95, as part of a larger Women’s Health Initiative study – a large, national, longitudinal study looking at chronic diseases in postmenopausal women. The study appeared in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

My tidbit of advice is to embrace the importance of being active during youth, and as we age throughout our lives. If it is integrated in childhood, then it becomes a lifelong habit that is carried throughout each decade and will be passed along to each future generations. This will have a positive impact on health and longevity for you and your children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.