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Live longer by strength training…

This is blog on how to live longer by strength training, was originally written and published by our Swedish partner https://www.sportslab.se/ . Thank you Marie Larsson and team for giving us permission to republish it.

We have previously described the effect of strength training in preventing injury and increasing performance in athletes and exercisers. Now there is clear scientific support with several well-designed studies. 

According to a new Japanese study published recently in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, regular strength training can reduce the risk of premature death. The Japanese study is a systematic review and meta-analysis of cohort studies. Each study containing 16 different reviews from 2012 to 2020 of people aged 18 and 97 from the US, UK, Australia and others. 

Better results with only 30-60 minutes per week!

These all showed a 10-20% reduction in the risk of dying prematurely from cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer if people exercised 30-60 min of strength training/week. The effect of a higher dose of strength training is still unclear.  The risk of diabetes was reduced by 17%, with a sharp reduction in risk for participants that completed up to 60 min of exercise/week followed by a gradual reduction thereafter. The importance of muscle mass for metabolism plays a role here. This is why increasing and/ or maintaining muscle mass reduces the risk of developing diabetes.

Combining strength training with cardio compared to no training at all further reduced the risk of premature death. 

The authors conclude the article by saying that larger studies are needed to investigate the effect on premature death of greater doses of exercise than 30-60 min per week. 

Momma H, et al. Br J Sports Med 2022;0:1-10. doi:10.1136/bjsports-2021-105061 

SportsLab comments – “Regular exercise is the best medicine for the body. Make sure you have a strength program that is effective, individualised and goal-specific. This way your program won’t take so long and it will make a difference, on so many levels.

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