You may be tired of “recommending exercise” for your health, but I want you to listen for a moment.
Researchers at the University of Sydney, Australia, used data from the UK Biobank, which contains the genetic information of 500,000 people, to study isolated high-intensity physical activity (VILPA) that occurs in everyday life, such as missing a train. As a result, we investigated the relationship between running up the stairs at the station without skipping one step and the risk of death.
The subjects were 25,241 people (14,178 women, average age 61.8 years old) who recorded their physical activity with wearable devices and whose physical and mental health status was known. They are “indoor people” who do not have the habit of taking a walk once a week, let alone leisure sports.
852 died during approximately 7 years of follow-up. There were 511 cancer deaths and 266 cardiovascular deaths. When examining the association with VILPA, the risk of all-cause mortality, cancer mortality, and cardiovascular disease mortality decreased with increasing VILPA.
Moreover, only VILPA for 1 to 2 minutes three times a day reduces the risk of all-cause mortality and cancer mortality by approximately 40%. The risk of dying from cardiovascular disease was almost halved.
In terms of VILPA hours per day, a median of 4.4 minutes/day reduced the risk of all-cause mortality and cancer mortality by 26-30%, respectively. Similarly, the risk of cardiovascular disease death was found to be reduced by 32-34%.
By the way, this result was almost the same as the mortality risk reduction rate of 62,344 people registered in the same UK Biobank who responded that they had a habit of vigorous exercise.
Health benefits per hour depend on exercise intensity. The higher the intensity of exercise, even if it’s just a few minutes to several tens of seconds, the more effective it is in strengthening cardiopulmonary function and preventing the onset and progression of cancer. “VILPA is effectively HIIT (high-intensity interval training), but people don’t realize it,” the researchers said.
Going to the gym or jogging doesn’t last long, but VILPA for 1-2 minutes a day might make it a habit. I wouldn’t recommend leaving home just in time for VILPA every morning.
(Interview and Composition/Medical Writer Yukie Ide)