A new study has found that exercising even as little as two minutes a day can add years to your life!
The study out of Australia finds that the excuse “ I just don’t have the time to exercise,” won’t fly anymore.
The researchers found that a mere two-minute burst of intense exercise daily for 15 minutes total for the week was associated with a lower risk of death.
Furthermore, the study revealed that increasing the intensity of the activity lowered the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
“The results indicate that accumulating vigorous activity in short bouts across the week can help us live longer,” said study author Matthew N. Ahmadi, a research fellow at the University of Sydney, Australia, in a news release.
“Given that lack of time is the most commonly reported barrier to physical activity, accruing small amounts sporadically during the day may be a particularly attractive option for busy people.”
The two-part study appeared in the European Heart Journal, a journal of the European Society of Cardiology.
The researchers examined the association between the volume and frequency of activity with death, including all causes of death and deaths from cardiovascular disease or cancer, as well as with the incidence of cardiovascular disease and cancer after the first year of the study.
The risk of all adverse events reduced as the volume and frequency of vigorous exercise increased said the news release.
Participants were tracked over the course of seven years.
While the first part of the study established that even small amounts of intense activity could add years to your life, the second half of the study showed the incremental benefits of increasing the amount and the intensity.
Compared with just two minutes of vigorous activity each week, 15 minutes was associated with an 18% lower risk of death and a 15% lower risk of cardiovascular disease, while 12 minutes was associated with a 17% lower risk of cancer.
The researchers noted that further gains were observed with increased physical activity.
For example, 53 minutes per week was associated with a 36% lower risk of death from any cause.
“Our results suggest that increasing the total volume of physical activity is not the only way to reduce the likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease,” said researcher Paddy C. Dempsey of the University of Leicester and University of Cambridge, in England and the Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute in Melbourne, Australia.
“Raising the intensity was also particularly important, while increasing both was optimal. This indicates that boosting the activities you already do is good for heart health. For example, picking up the pace on your daily walk to the bus stop or completing household chores more quickly.”