Weight Training and Aerobic Exercise Lowers Risk of Early Death

  • A new study found that those who weight trained one to two times per week and performed cardiovascular exercises had up to a 47% lower risk of early death compared to those who don’t exercise.
  • Researchers found those who weight trained had a 9% lower risk of early death and those who performed cardiovascular exercises had a 32% lower risk, compared to those who don’t exercise.
  • Researchers found women were more likely to see this association compared to men.

We’ve heard that mixing up our workout routine is crucial to our health, and even noted the incredible benefits of lifting weights beyond just building muscle. But limited research looked at the long-term benefits of weight lifting and aerobic exercise together. New research suggests that a combination of weight lifting and cardiovascular activities may lower your risk for early death.

The new study, published in British Journal of Sports Medicine, examined data from nearly 100,000 participants in the Prostate, Lung, Colorectal, and Ovarian Cancer Screening Trial. After adjusting for demographics, lifestyle, and behavioral risk factors, researchers found that after years of follow-up, those who reported cardiovascular activity and weight lifting one to two times per week had up to 47% lower risk of all-cause mortality, compared to those who did not exercise. This shows an increase over those who regularly lift weights having just a 9% lower risk of all-cause mortality. Though researchers did note that this number increased the more often they lifted weights. And those who performed aerobic exercises, but did not weight lift, had a 32% lower all-cause mortality risk.

Researchers looked at cancer mortality and its association with weight lifting and aerobic exercise but found no correlation. They also found that the participant’s education, smoking status, body mass index, race, and ethnicity didn’t change the results, but found that their sex did. Women were associated with a more significant decrease in mortality risk, compared to men.

But this isn’t the first time science has linked lifting weights with living longer. A meta-analysis published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine earlier this year found people who did 30 to 60 minutes of resistance, stretch, or weight training had a 10% to 20% lower risk of early death from all causes.

Muscle training offers a slew of health benefits that can directly improve your longevity. Weight lifting can promote weight loss by revving up your metabolism and targeting belly fat, strengthen bones and prevent osteoporosis, and improve your overall health. Plus, cardiovascular activity can also promote weight loss and promote overall health.

“Muscle strengthening is associated with preservation of skeletal muscle mass, which then plays an important role in glucose metabolism,” Anton Bilchik, M.D., Ph.D., chief of medicine and director of the gastrointestinal research program at Saint John’s Cancer Institute at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica previously told Prevention. “Abnormal glucose metabolism has been associated with an increase in cardiovascular disease and cancer.”

Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have long recommended mixing up your workout routine. The Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans suggest aiming for 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity (about 30 minutes per day, for five days a week) and two days of muscle-strengthening activity.

So next time you work out, consider changing up your regimen to include weight lifting and aerobic exercise. You might just live longer.

https://www.prevention.com/fitness/a41427969/weight-training-and-aerobic-exercise-may-lower-risk-of-early-death-study/