A new observational study published in the Heart and Stroke Foundation’s journal Stroke found that the fitter you are in middle age, the less likely you are to have a stroke after the age of 65. So those excuses about it being too late to start, or you’re too old to get in shape or (insert excuse here) are null and void.
Researchers classified 19,815 adults between the ages of 45 and 50 according to their fitness level, and found that those with the highest level of fitness had a 37% lower risk of stroke after age 65, compared to their counterparts with the lowest level of fitness. Even after accounting for typical stroke risk factors like high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and atrial fibrillation, the results remained the same.
“We all hear that exercise is good for you, but many people still don’t do it. Our hope is that this objective data on preventing a fatal disease such as stroke, will help motivate people to get moving and get fit,” said Ambarish Pandey, MD, the first author of the study and a cardiology fellow at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas.
The American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes of moderate exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise weekly. As a rule of thumb, exercise thirty minutes a day, five times a week, for better overall cardiovascular health.
So, as they say, carpe diem. It’s never too late to make the healthy choice. If you’ve recently started cycling, jogging or any other physical activity and you’d like to share, tag us in on Instagram or Facebook!