Here’s How Many Minutes Of Exercise A Week Could Help Extend Your Life

You’re reading Move, the nudge we need to get active, however makes us happiest and healthiest.

It’s well known that consistent exercise is good for you, and a new study published in Circulation – the American Heart Association’s scientific journal – underlines this idea.

The study of 116,221 adults found that people who went above and beyond the minimum guidelines for moderate or vigorous physical activity had a lower risk of premature mortality.

The current physical activity guidelines for adults

Current physical activity guidelines from the US Department of Health and Human Services recommend that each week, adults get 150 to 300 minutes of moderate physical activity, 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous physical activity “or an equivalent combination of both,” the study notes – with NHS exercise guidelines in the UK stating similar.

This study defined moderate physical activity as walking, weightlifting and doing lower-intensity exercise. It categorised exercises like running, bicycling and swimming as vigorous physical activity.

Those who worked out two to four times beyond the minimum lived longer

Study participants self-reported their leisure time physical activity (so not any physical activity at work or otherwise) via questionnaires over the course of 30 years.

From there, the study reported that those who worked out two to four times over the minimum amount of exercise had a lower risk of death from cardiovascular disease, as well as any other cause.

Specifically, the study reported that those who worked out two to four times above the moderate physical activity recommendations (around 300 to 599 minutes per week) saw the most benefit. Participants had “26% to 31% lower all-cause mortality, 28% to 38% lower [cardiovascular] mortality, and 25% to 27% lower non-[cardiovascular]” mortality, according to the study.

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