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The Benefits of Exercise for Seniors – How Much Exercise is Good?

Home Care in Mt. Laurel, NJ

Home Care in Mt. Laurel, NJMedical News Today reports that the World Health organization says heart disease and stroke are the cause of many deaths in the United States. About 25% of all deaths in America come from heart disease. Stroke is the fourth leading cause of deaths in America, after heart disease, then cancer, and then respiratory disease, with around 800,000 people having a stroke every year.

Exercise for people over the age of sixty-years old has a direct impact on reducing deaths from both heart disease and stroke.

In-home care professionals, who help the elderly with preparation of meals, personal grooming needs, and household chores, also help the older adults under their care to get more exercise. A study done in Finland found benefits for the elderly when they participated in activities outside the home. Many home care providers are instrumental in providing this encouragement to the elderly.

Getting outside to go shopping, visit friends, walk around the block, or simply enjoy the fresh air in the backyard, all have benefits for seniors and should be a regular part of senior care. The benefits come from the automatic increase in physical activity, the increased chances for socialization with others, and the reduction of boredom from being in the home all the time.

The improvement in mental attitude that results from increased physical activities also helps prevent depression. WebMD says that exercise creates this psychological effect because of the release of natural endorphins that occurs.

Proper Level of Exercise for Seniors
The results of a recent research study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, as reported by Medical News Today; show the proper level of exercise for seniors.

The research study first used the measure of physical activity for those that were inactive as the baseline. The standard used was the Metabolic Equivalent of Task Minutes (MET). The MET standard shows the level of calories burned for each minute of physical activities. A single MET value equals the amount of calories burned while sitting for a minute.

By using the MET standard, the researchers were able to categorize people into three groups, which were:

  • Low Activity – Those with MET weekly scores of less than 500.
  • Medium Activity – Those with MET weekly scores between 500 and 999.
  • High Activity – Those with MET weekly scores of above 1,000.

The researchers analyzed the risk of death for these three categories. The data came from nine studies, with 122,417 people monitored for an average of ten years. Of those people monitored, 18,122 died during the period of the study.

The results were dramatic and conclusive:

  • Compared with people who were inactive, those with low MET activity achieved a 22% lower risk of death.
  • Those with medium MET activity achieved a 28% lower risk of death.
  • Those with high MET activity achieved a 35% lower risk of death.

The main benefit noted was the reduction in heart disease and stroke.

Even moderate exercise for seniors has a benefit. A low MET score of 250 is associated with health benefits for seniors. This is seventy-five minutes per week of medium to vigorous exercise, which is the same as fifteen minutes per day.


What is heart disease?

Stroke: Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis and Treatment

Out-of-home activities may promote older persons’ physical activity

Exercise and Depression

Even a little weekly moderate to vigorous physical activity goes a long way for the over 60s

For all of your home care needs in Mt. Laurel, NJ and the surrounding areas call and talk to us at Home to Stay Healthcare Solutions (856) 321-1500.

Andrew Dubler

Home to Stay Health Care Solutions (H2S) is a solutions minded, non-medical home care company enabling seniors and disabled members of our community to stay at home.
Home to Stay Senior Care Solutions is owned and operated by the Dubler and Skole Families and was started because of experiences they had with their own Families. In one situation Mom was living alone and had a fall. It was not until this fall that the family realized they were unprepared.

When it was time for their Mom to come home, she needed companion and personal care to assist her and prevent another accident. Like most people in this situation, they were confused and did not know where to go for help. It was this life-changing experience that lead to starting a home care company that is focused on enabling those who wish to stay at home and age in place.
Andrew Dubler

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