Running once a week could significantly reduce your risk of dying from serious illnesses, according to a new study.
“Exercise has been shown to reduce many of the factors that lead to heart disease so it reduces diabetes, it reduces hypertension,” Dr Michael Chan, an interventional cardiologist with St. Joseph Hospital in Orange, California, told a news portal.
The benefits of running have been well documented, according to multiple studies. For the new study, researchers wanted to investigate how much running is needed to gain the benefits. "To solve the conundrum, we thoroughly searched the scientific literature for studies on this topic and formally combined their results,” study lead author Zeljko Pedisic, PhD, associate professor at Victoria University, Australia, told a news portal.
The team set out to review published research and doctoral theses to uncover the answer. “Findings of individual studies on running and the risk of death were inconsistent. While most found beneficial effects of running, some did not find statistically significant associations. Even among those that found positive associations, the effect sizes largely varied,” Pedisic told a news portal.
After looking at a lot of data, the team found 14 studies that studied the link between running and risk of death from diseases like cancer and cardiovascular disease. The data led researchers to conclude any amount of running, no matter how big or small can reduce the risk of death from various causes by 27 per cent.
"It is interesting that we found such benefits even for relatively small amounts of running, such as 1 day a week or 50 minutes a week. Moreover, we found no evidence that the benefits significantly increase or decrease with higher doses of running," Pedisic told a news portal.
A 2014 study investigating the link between running and longevity found runners lived three years longer on average compared to those who did not run. "The opposite of exercise is sedentary habits. The more you move and the more active you are the less your risk of disease," Chan told a news portal.
The study's findings were originally published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.
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