As another year closes, I find myself taking stock of years passed and looking forward to years future. Crossing into mid-adulthood means thinking critically about my overall health: do I have habits in place that will extend the life of both my body and mind?
So I did some research on the habits I have in place, which includes running and an easy-to-follow daily vitamin regimen. Here’s what medical health experts and scientists have to say about the fruits of these two labors:
1. Decrease Disease Risk
As of September 2021, the CDC published heart disease as the leading cause of death in the US, killing as many as 659,000 people every year. That means 1 in every 4 deaths is caused by heart disease.
Coming in 2nd place, according to the CDC, is cancer, which kills 599,601 Americans every year, or 1 in 6.
Time and again, however, running is listed as the leading preventative measure for disease with a 30% reduced heart disease risk and a 23% reduced cancer risk. In a study published by the British Journal of Sports Medicine, the authors concluded, “Any amount of running, even just once a week, is better than no running.”
As we age, our bodies accumulate free radicals, which cause oxidative stress and are directly linked to overall signs of aging as well as a range of diseases. In a study published by the US National Library of Medicine, running was proven to alleviate the negative effects caused by free radicals. Unfortunately, it also induced oxidative stress, inflammation, and muscle fatigue. So, while it does help in negating side effects of free radicals, it does nothing to eliminate them.
This is where supplementing with the Peak Performance Pack changes everything. The Sterling Study and the Freiburg Study provided evidence that the Peak Performance Pack substantially reduced free radical activity and inflammation in healthy individuals. Running and Peak Performance Pack, in my mind, are the one-two punch for vitality and disease prevention.
2. Longer Life Expectancy
Running as little as once a week can have dramatic results in overall life expectancy. In a 2018 study on the longevity effects of lifestyle runners, the research concluded that runners have a 25-40 percent reduced risk of premature mortality. This benefit attaches an on-average 3 years to a runner’s lifespan.
Add these clinically studied daily vitamins to your daily regimen and reduce the overall inflammation and free radical activity in your body. The vitamins, Peak Performance Pack (PPP) powered by Oligo technology, has a direct result on overall longevity and health markers like blood pressure, cholesterol, blood glucose, triglycerides, and resting heart rate. Interestingly enough, these categories are also positively correlated with running.
Life expectancy alone, however, is not enough to motivate me to exercise. I don’t simply want to live longer; I want to maintain my quality of life as I extend it.
3. Increase Longevity and Vitality
My 90-year-old grandmother briskly walks or jogs 2 miles every evening to, “Give the dog some exercise,” as she puts it. She is convinced that this daily routine is a significant factor in her vitality and overall health. Science agrees.
A group of 75-year-old lifetime runners and bicyclists were assessed for their biological profiles by researchers at Ball State University. According to the New York Times article written on the study, the silver seniors had biological profiles closer to 25-year-old graduate students than to their non-exercising 75-year-old peers.
As discussed, part of this biological profile has to do with key health markers such as lower resting heart rate, lower blood pressure, better heart health, lower cholesterol, and lower blood glucose (also affected by the Peak Performance Pack), but another aspect has to do with body strength.
Contrary to popular belief, research shows a positive correlation between running and joint health, which tends to decline with age in both runners and non-runners alike; however, this study compared 675 marathon runners with non-active study participants and concluded that the more you run, the better both your knees and back were from the general population.
And as a last word for physical vitality and disease prevention, let’s throw in running as a preventative measure for osteoporosis, since running, as a weight-bearing exercise, builds dense, strong bones. Stave off that hip surgery. Run.
4. Improves cognition and mental health
This was one I hadn’t considered before beginning this article, but the findings were clear. Any aerobic exercise, running among them, pumps large amounts of oxygen-rich blood to the brain. In brain scans done at the Amen Clinic, a lack of blood flow to key areas of the brain is a key indicator of mental disorders including several types of ADD. Exercise as a holistic solution often reverses minor side effects of ADD for patients, but it is not meant as a substitute for working with a doctor.
One meta-analysis found that exercise likely increased the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which is a protein that encourages the growth and survival of neurons in the brain. While another study by the Mayo Clinic concluded that running increased total brain volume, including Grey Matter, even in areas of the brain not specifically related to movement processing. That means running makes your brain bigger and stronger all-around.
Depression treatment is also among the positive side effects of regular running. A meta-analysis from 2016 concluded, “Physical exercise is an effective intervention for depression. It also could be a viable adjunct treatment in combination with antidepressants.” As we may remember from a lovable 2000s rom com, “Exercise makes people happy.”
5. Improves immunity
Finally, we have the immunity boost affect of running. I saved this for last, however, because in the studies done on running with immunity levels, some interesting conclusions were made. Regular exercise did, in fact, increase the body’s surveillance against disease, lower inflammation, enhance gut microbiota composition, reduce risk of upper respiratory infections and influenza, and improve antibody response. Heavy exertion, however, elevated the risk of these same categories. So it would appear that regular, moderate exercise is good, while extreme exercise can be temporarily detrimental to your immunity.
Just keep running
With so many benefits for overall health, both physical and mental, it’s easy to see why so many people gravitate to running as their form of regular exercise. Add disease-preventative vitamins and supplements to this list, and we’ll be unstoppable. It’s time to kick aging to the curb as runners use their favorite hobby to fight disease and extend the longevity of their bodies and minds.