Aging & Geriatrics
Resources
Basic InformationLatest News
Could Viagra Help Prevent Alzheimer's?Black Americans Less Likely to Lose Hearing as They Age'Mild Cognitive Impairment' in Older Age Often Disappears, Study FindsDuring the Holidays, Help Protect the Elderly from Falls'Active Grandparent': Humans Evolved to Exercise in Old AgeReminder Apps on Smartphones May Help in Early DementiaNeurologists' Group Issues Guidance to Families on Controversial Alzheimer's DrugTrial Begins of Nasal Vaccine for Alzheimer's DiseaseGrandmother's Brain In Sync With Her Grandkids': StudyMost Older Adults Plan to Travel Soon, With Precautions: PollDemand for Liver Transplant Rises Sharply Among Older AmericansPricey Alzheimer's Drug Drives Spike in Medicare B Premium: OfficialsAlzheimer's Diagnosis May Come With Big Cost to Social LifeWhy Are So Few Seniors Getting Heart Failure Rehab?Fish on Your Plate May Keep Your Brain SharpAlmost 1 in 3 U.S. Seniors Now Sees at Least 5 Doctors Per YearLanguage Can Make the Difference Between Home, Hospital Care: StudyUse of Ritalin, Other Stimulants Can Raise Heart Risks for Older AdultsCataracts Tied to Higher Odds of Death From Heart DiseaseRight Amount of Sleep May Be Important in Early Alzheimer'sAHA News: Hearing Loss and the Link to DementiaFDA Eases Access to Cheaper Over-the-Counter Hearing AidsOne-Third of Americans With Arthritis Get No ExerciseMany Older Americans Who Should Be Checking Blood Pressure at Home Aren't: PollRetired and Want to Stay Sharp? Hop on the Internet More OftenFDA Approves Pfizer Booster Shots for Seniors, High-Risk AmericansTurning 65 Brings Big Health Care Cost Savings, Study FindsAfter an ICU Stay, Social Support Crucial for Seniors' SurvivalDiets That Lower Brain Iron Could Keep You SharpHealth Savings Accounts Used Least by People Who Need Them Most: PollCould Cheaper, Over-the-Counter Hearing Aids Finally Be Here?Postponing Retirement Might Help Keep Dementia at BayHow Common Is Opioid Misuse Among Seniors After Hip Surgery?Vaccines' Power Against COVID Hospitalization Fades in Elderly: StudyAHA News: What Are Researchers Doing to Stop Dementia?Why Water Is Key to Your Heart's HealthToo Much Screen Time Could Raise Your Odds for StrokeHaving Someone Who'll Listen May Be Good for Your Aging BrainA Second 'Closet' for Some LGBTQ Seniors Entering Nursing HomesAnother Pandemic Harm: Seniors May Have Higher Risk of FallingJust 200 Fewer Calories Per Day Brings Big Health Rewards for Obese SeniorsDeaths From Alzheimer's Far More Common in Rural AmericaSeniors Rarely Discuss Their Drinking With Their DoctorsLoneliness Raises Opioid Dangers in Seniors: StudyWant to Avoid Dementia? Add Some Color to Your Plate1 in 20 Cases of Dementia Occurs in People Under 65Reading, Puzzles May Delay Alzheimer's by 5 Years: StudyWhole Grains Every Day: Key to Your Health and WaistlineMedicare Mulls Coverage for Controversial Alzheimer's DrugMissing Teeth, Higher Odds for Dementia?
LinksSelf-Help Groups
Related Topics

Depression: Depression & Related Conditions
Elder Care

'Active Grandparent': Humans Evolved to Exercise in Old Age

HealthDay News
by Robert Preidt
Updated: Nov 23rd 2021

new article illustration

TUESDAY, Nov. 23, 2021 (HealthDay News) -- Becoming a couch potato as you get older goes against evolution and puts your health at risk, a new study suggests.

Humans have evolved to be active in their later years, and staying active can protect against heart disease and a number of other serious health problems, according to researchers at Harvard.

"It's a widespread idea in Western societies that as we get older, it's normal to slow down, do less, and retire," said the study's lead author, Daniel Lieberman. He is an evolutionary biologist at Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass. "Our message is the reverse: As we get older, it becomes even more important to stay physically active."

Physical activity later in life shifts energy away from processes that can harm health — such as excess fat storage — and toward cellular and DNA repair and maintenance processes that have been shown to lower the risk of diabetes, obesity, cancer, osteoporosis, Alzheimer's and depression, according to the report published Nov. 22 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The study compares humans to apes. The researchers pointed out that apes, which typically live 35 to 40 years in the wild, are much less active than most people — suggesting that humans evolved not just to live longer but also to be more active.

Modern-day hunter-gathers average about 135 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity a day. That's six to 10 times more than a typical American and may be why hunter-gathers who survive childhood tend to live about seven decades.

One benefit of physical activity is a longer, healthier life, the study authors said in a university news release.

"The key take-home point is that because we evolved to be active throughout our lives, our bodies need physical activity to age well," Lieberman said. "In the past, daily physical activity was necessary in order to survive, but today we have to choose to exercise, that is do voluntary physical activity for the sake of health and fitness."

The researchers noted that physical activity levels have fallen worldwide as machines and technology have replaced human labor, and another recent study from Lieberman's lab showed that Americans are less physically active than they were 200 years ago.

"The key is to do something, and to try to make it enjoyable so you'll keep doing it," Lieberman said. "The good news is that you don't need to be as active as a hunter- gatherer. Even small amounts of physical activity — just 10 or 20 minutes a day — substantially lower your risk [of premature death]."

More information

The U.S. National Institute on Aging has more about exercise and physical activity.

SOURCE: Harvard University, news release, Nov. 22, 2021




328 W. Claiborne St.
P.O. Box 964
Monroeville,
Alabama 36460
Tel: (251)575-4203
Fax:(251)575-9459


powered by centersite dot net