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Moderate Intensity Exercise can Work as Wonderfully as Pills

By  , BBC News
Oct 04, 2013
4.8 / 5(4 Ratings)
Quick Bites

  • Moderate physical activity helps reduce the risk of stroke by 27%.
  • Prescriptions have risen and it is important for people to identify the benefits of exercising. 
  • Only one-third of people do the recommended 2.5 hours of exercise.
  • One must not however ditch drugs for exercise.

 

More

A new study that has been published in the British Medical Journal says that exercise can be as good as any medicine for people with a medical condition like heart disease. The study involved hundreds of trials with over 340,000 patients so as to assess the merits of exercise as well as drugs in the prevention of deaths.

Benefits of exercisingIt was found that any type of physical activity outperformed drugs and stroke medicine. Researchers say that exercises should be added to ones prescriptions and not ditch their medicines for exercise. There has been an increase in the number of prescriptions that are given by doctors to patients because of the lack of exercise among adults. Only about one third of the people living in England do the recommended hours i.e. 2.5 of moderate intensity exercise like walking briskly or cycling every week.

In the year 2010, there was an average of 17.7 prescriptions for each person compared with 11.2 in 2000. To do the study, scientists from the London School of Economic, Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute at Harvard Medical School and Stanford University School of Medicine checked several of the medical literature to find whether any research was done that compared exercise with pills in the form of therapy.

The researchers identified 305 trials to make a mention of in their study and these trials put light on managing different conditions like existing heart disease, heart failure, pre-diabetes and stroke rehabilitation.


Dr Peter Coleman of the Stroke Association said that exercise along with drugs played a vital role. He added that moderate physical activity helps reduce the risk of stroke by about 27%.



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