Midlife fitness associated with lower risk of disease: study

Dallas – Being physically fit in middle age may reduce the risk of developing chronic diseases later in life, according to a study conducted by the Cooper Institute – a nonprofit health and research organization – and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center.

Using data from the Cooper Center Longitudinal Study and Medicare records, as well as a treadmill test to assess fitness, researchers found that middle-aged individuals (median age of 49) with the highest levels of fitness had a lower incidence of chronic diseases 26 years later, compared with less fit middle-agers, the study abstract stated.

The study was published online Aug. 27 in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

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