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Stress, Exercise and Aging

Once again researchers have proven that psychological stress leads to disease as well as premature aging.  In a recent study conducted by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, it was shown that telemores, protective DNA strips, are shortened when exposed to prolonged stress.  These strips are known to be biological markers of aging and the strains and stresses that this entails.

The research now shows that as little as 75 minutes of vigorous exercise per week among adults, or one hundred and fifty minutes of moderate exercise, can actually prevent the deterioration of these important protectors.  This rather limited amount of exercise, even amongst high stress groups, was found to protect against damage to the telemores.

Shortened telemores have been further linked to a variety of health and wellness issues.  Damage to these DNA protectors has been associated with Diabetes, heart disease, and early death.  Telemores have a profound impact on a host of specific illnesses, but they can also be predictive of our overall health.

In a study of older, pre-menopausal women looking after spouses with serious health conditions it was found that those who got the recommended amount of exercise per week were much less affected by the continuous psychological stress than those who did not.  These women were found to have protection against the damaging effects of stress.

The telemores of the high stressed women who exercised were in better condition than their high stressed, but more sedentary counterparts.  What this shows researchers is that once again exercise is one of the best remedies against stress.

Because exercise helps to counter the effects of stress, it also has an important role to play in keeping the body young both inside and out.  While it is obvious that regular exercise can help to keep our bodies fit and healthy as we age, it is less well known that regular activity can also prevent DNA damage on the cellular level.

These findings alongside many others demonstrate once again that there is simply no substitute for a healthy exercise regime.  Keeping bodies young from the inside out is the only way to ensure health and long life.  Any activity that can get you sweating for 75 minutes a week, alongside some weight lifting or other resistance training, will help to relieve stress and protect you from illness and chronic disease.