Scientists have discovered the fountain of youth—it's running. Studies continue to find that hitting the roads improves health and well-being. "The biggest benefits come from vigorous exercise like running," says JoAnn Manson, M.D., chief of preventive medicine at Brigham and Women's Hospital. Here are the latest reasons to lace up.
Look AheadPeople who run more than 35 miles a week are 54 percent less likely to suffer age-related vision loss than those who cover 10 miles a week.
Keep the BeatRunners who log a weekly run of 10 miles (or more) are 39 percent less likely to use high blood pressure meds and 34 percent less likely to need cholesterol meds compared with those who don't go farther than 3 miles.
Function WellMen who burn at least 3,000 calories per week (equal to about five hours of running) are 83 percent less likely to have severe erectile dysfunction.
Build BoneRunning strengthens bones better than other aerobic activities, say University of Missouri researchers who compared the bone density of runners and cyclists. Sixty-three percent of the cyclists had low density in their spine or hips; only 19 percent of runners did.
Think FastBritish workers were surveyed on a day they worked out and a day they didn't. People said they made fewer mistakes, concentrated better, and were more productive on the day they were active.
Stay SharpA study in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society reported that women who were active as teenagers were less likely to develop dementia later in life.
Sleep TightInsomniacs fell asleep in 17 minutes on days they ran, compared to 38 minutes on days they didn't. They also slept for an extra hour on days they exercised.
Sneeze LessPeople who exercise for an hour a day are 18 percent less likely to suffer upper-respiratory-tract infections than those who are inactive, according to a study from Sweden. Moderate activity boosts immunity.
Breathe EasyResearchers had asthmatics do two cardio workouts and one strength session a week. After three months, they reported less wheezing and shortness of breath.
Live LongerA review of 22 studies found that people who work out 2.5 hours a week are 19 percent less likely to die prematurely than those who don't exercise. A separate study found that active people have a 50 percent lower risk of premature death.
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