Medium to high intensity physical exercise is a factor contributing to the longevity of older women, according to a new American study published in the Circulation of the American Heart Association (AHA).
In the study, involving more than 17.700 women aged 72 years in average, the researchers asked participants to wear an accelerometer daily to record their physical activity levels. Women were observed for an average of two years, while 207 women died in that period.
When researchers divided women into four subgroups, according to their levels of physical activity, they found that those who did more often moderate to high intensity exercise, such as a intense walking, had up to 70 percent less chances of losing their lives. However, very low-intensity physical activity did not appear to protect women from premature death.
It is noted that, while the previous studies had a 30% benefit in terms of reducing the risk of premature death, the new findings appear to be much more optimistic, indicating that the risk can be reduced by up to 70% from regular physical exercise.