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Dear women, here’s why you need to start running, even if it’s just for one min daily

Running also lessens chances of osteoporosis and fractures in older age.

fitness Updated: Jul 18, 2017 17:00 IST
Asian News International, Washington DC
Fitness,Health,Women's health
Doing a high-intensity, weight-bearing activity each day is linked to good bone health.(Shutterstock)

Running has a whole host of benefits - it leads to better knees, benefits the spine, and reduces back pain. Women now have an additional reason to take up running. A new study has found that just one to two minutes of running everyday can improve your bone health and also reduce chances of osteoporosis and fractures in older age. Scientists from the University of Exeter and the University of Leicester found that those who did brief bursts of high-intensity, weight-bearing activity equivalent to a medium-paced run for pre-menopausal women, or a slow jog for post-menopausal women, had better bone health.

The researchers found that women who on average did 60-120 seconds of high-intensity, weight-bearing activity per day had 4% better bone health than those who did less than a minute. Lead author Dr Victoria Stiles from the University of Exeter in Britain said that there is a clear link between high-intensity, weight-bearing exercise and better bone health of women. “However, it seems likely that just 1-2 minutes of running a day is good for bone health,” Stiles added.

They looked at data on more than 2,500 women and compared activity levels (measured by wrist-worn monitors) with bone health (measured by an ultrasound scan of heel bone). As well as finding four percent better bone health among women who did one to two minutes of high-intensity, weight-bearing exercise. They also found 6% better bone health among those who did more than two minutes a day.

“We wanted to make every second count in our analysis, because short snippets of high-intensity activity are more beneficial to bone health than longer, continuous periods,” she said. “We were careful not to ignore short bursts of activity throughout the day,” the researchers added. Good bone health has multiple health benefits, including a reduced risk of osteoporosis and fractures in older age.

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First Published: Jul 18, 2017 16:52 IST