Two Science Stories
The bottom line is food first. A study published last month in The Journals of Gerontology said healthy eating leads to health life. A look at 1609 people 49 years old and older provides a significant look results and how they apply to you. After 10 years those that had better adherence to dietary guidelines had 58% higher odds of successful aging than those with the least dietary guidelines compliance.
Functional fitness is important. When evaluated it’s balance, flexibility, and mobility. The question is what qualifies as the kind of exercise that gives it to you? In another study published in The Journals of Gerontology, Hatha Yoga classes were compared to strength-and-stretch classes for the functional benefits. Three times a week previously sedentary adults the average age of 62 participated in either Hatha Yoga or the stretch-strenthn classes for eight weeks.
A comparison of pre and post tests revealed that both groups significantly enhance functional fitness. An earlier study comparing the two exercise modes showed the yoga was better at boosting cognitive function.
Note: keep in mind the strength and stretch classes are not heavy weight training and the linear nature of the exercises may have reduced functional results compared to other exercise venues or heavier weight training allowed by machine exercise.
There’s no shortage of research supporting what to do, how to do it, and when to do it. Interpreting that can be the challenge! If you know statistics you can look at them from a number of angles and find a number of interpretations. If you have a question based on research you’ve heard or wonder about, please share it!