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Health for Over 55s

Health for Over 55s

A July 2019 study by University East Anglia found that,

  • “In England, participation in physical activity tends to decrease around the age of 55.”

  • "Frailty and pre-frailty - the decline in health, resilience and mobility often associated with ageing - are conditions previously expected to be found in people at retirement age and over. But now these conditions affect a third of British adults aged 50-65.”

  • "Adults are spending more years of their life working than ever before. Retiring is a life-changing event which provides all sorts of opportunities - but it coincides with declining physical activity, health and wellbeing.”

  • "From the age of around 55, people begin thinking about retirement and making plans for their future.”

  • "In order to enjoy a fit and healthy retirement, a really key thing is that people need to maintain their physical fitness through their fifties and beyond.”

  • "But we found that there are many barriers to this - from poor health, lack of motivation, and the cost and availability of sports, activities and fitness classes, to not having enough time - due to work or in many cases because of caring responsibilities.”

  • "Many respondents also felt excluded and said that sports facilities and fitness classes tended to appeal to a much younger market.”

  • "While retirement can free up time, deteriorating health and wellbeing often become a new barrier.”

  • "That's why it's so important to maintain fitness in the lead up to retirement.”

  • "Supporting older adults to lead active lifestyles ahead of and at retirement could ensure people are more mobile, capable and healthier once retired.”

  • "There is no one-size-fits all approach. But we found that activity that is combined with socialising, or other purposeful actions such as dog walking, gardening, housework, childcare or volunteering, were all good ways for over-55s to remain active.”

  • "With an ageing population there is also an ageing workforce who need support to age, work and retire actively,"

 

Exercise and Alzheimer’s

Exercise and Alzheimer’s

A July 2019 study by University of Wisconsin School of Medicine found that, “in a late-middle-age population at risk for Alzheimer's disease, physically active individuals experience fewer age-related alterations in biomarkers associated with the disease, as well as memory and cognitive functioning … [showing] evidence that lifestyle habits - in this case regular, moderate exercise - can modify the effect of what is commonly considered a non-modifiable risk factor for Alzheimer's, in this case aging"

 

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-08/apa-rem080119.php

Resistance Training for Older Adults

Resistance Training for Older Adults

Professor Mark Peterson, of the University of Michigan Institute for Healthcare Policy & Innovation and Michigan Center on the Demography of Aging said, "Current research has demonstrated that resistance training is a powerful care model to combat loss of muscle strength and mass in the aging population…"

A July 2019 position statement by Quest Diagnostics said that "…resistance training can positively affect physical functioning, mobility, independence, chronic disease management, psychological wellbeing, quality of life and healthy life expectancy … in most cases, the vast benefits of resistance training largely outweigh the risks when training is properly implemented…"

Resistance training (or strength training) is, “Strength training is a type of physical exercise specializing in the use of resistance to induce muscular contraction which builds the strength, anaerobic endurance, and size of skeletal muscles … Recommended training for older adults is three times a week of light strength training exercises. Exercise machines are a commonly used equipment in a gym setting, including treadmills with exercises such as walking or light jogging. Home-based exercises should usually consist of body weight or elastic band exercises that maintain a low level of impact on the muscles. Weights can also be used by older adults if they maintain a lighter weight load with an average amount of repetitions (10–12 reps) with suitable supervision.”

 

 

Avicenna on the Best Time for Exercise

Avicenna on the Best Time for Exercise

It is worth repeating that, “Yesterday's food should have passed both gastric and hepatic digestion, and also intravascular digestion, —the time for the next meal now approaching … it is better to choose a time for exercise when one is not hungry, and when one is hot and moist rather than cold and dry. But the best time is when the state is. between the two. Exercise in a man of hot and dry temperament may lead to illness, and he will benefit by avoiding it at such a time...”

http://data.nur.nu/Kutub/English/Avicenna_Canon-of-Medicine_text.pdf

Heart Disease: Sitting at work -v- Sitting at home

Heart Disease: Sitting at work -v- Sitting at home

A June 2019 study by Columbia University finds that, “…leisure-time sitting (while watching TV)--but not sitting at work--was associated with a greater risk of heart disease and death among the study's more than 3,500 participants. The study also found that moderate-to-vigorous exercise may reduce or eliminate the harmful effects of sedentary television watching.”

Dr Keith Diaz said, “Our findings show that how you spend your time outside of work may matter more when it comes to heart health … Even if you have a job that requires you to sit for long periods of time, replacing the time you spend sitting at home with strenuous exercise could reduce your risk of heart disease and death."

Constipation - Qabz - Imsak-ul-Batan

Constipation - Qabz - Imsak-ul-Batan

Constipation, Qabz, Husr, Ehtebaas-al- batan, Eátaqaal-al- batan, Ehtabas-al- tabiya, Eátaqaal-al- tabiya  and Imsaak-ul- batan

The home of disease and the mother of disease

The Arabs of old said, “The stomach is the home of disease and restraint is the basis of the remedy.” There is also an old saying that “constipation is the mother of all diseases”. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The son of Adam does not fill any vessel worse than his stomach. It is sufficient for the son of Adam to eat a few mouthfuls, to keep him going. If he must do that (fill his stomach), then let him fill one third with food, one third with drink and one third with air.”

The Cause of constipation

The National Health Portal India states that, “According to Unani Medicine, constipation (qabz) is caused by intake of less quantity of food, consumption of constipative and flatulent diets, decreased repulsive force or increased retensive force of intestine, weakened intestinal sensation and muscles, excessive absorption of chyme by the liver, decreased flow of secretions towards intestine and weakened heat of stomach and intestine…” and is a result of a “faulty lifestyle and wrong dietary pattern. Causes like untimely, unbalanced food habits, irregular sleeping habits, and low physical exercise are few of them. It is also mentioned that constipation is the mother of all diseases. It causes gastritis, piles, duodenal ulcer and severe abdominal pain.”

Diagnosing Constipation

 In June 2019 research by King's College London it was reported that

  1. The “public's perception of constipation differs drastically from that of doctors' and from the formal diagnosis guidelines.”

  2. “Currently prescription medication for constipation fails in nearly 60% of patients and almost half report not being satisfied with their treatment.”

  3. “Nearly one in three "healthy" patients were … clinically constipated but did not recognise it.

  4. “The study also highlighted six key symptom clusters which were commonly agreed upon across the study groups: abdominal discomfort, pain and bloating; rectal discomfort; infrequent bowel movements and hard stools; sensory dysfunction; flatulence and bloating; fecal incontinence.”

 

Recommendations

  • Drink more water.

  • Do more exercise.

  • Walk or do light exercise in the open air in the morning.

  • Take a hot bath on an empty stomach.

  • Eat radishes, turnips, peas, carrots, tomatoes, beetroot, sprouts, coriander, cabbage, and mint.

  • Eat avocados, guava, mangoes, oranges, papaya, and grapes.

  • Eat dried figs, almonds, apricots, and dates.

  • Drink apple-pear juice.

  • Eat stewed prunes, figs, and dates.

  • Chew food properly.

  • Drink more soup.

  • At the end of meal, eat watermelon, mangoes, and cucumber.

  • Eat honey and lentils.

  • Reduce bread, white flour, biscuits, preserves, sugar, cakes, pasta, pizzas, burgers, cookies.

  • Avoid fast foods, coffee and strong tea, fried foods, oily and junk foods.

  • Avoid boiled eggs, cheese and yoghurt.

  • Avoid spices, fats, and excessive salt. 

Tenacity in older age

Tenacity in older age

The University of Jyväskylä in a 2018 study demonstrates that, “tenacity and flexibility are beneficial for out-of-home mobility ...”

“Older people who persistently strive for their goals, but at the same time are able to adjust their goals to better correspond to current circumstances, move across a larger life-space than do their less tenacious and flexible peers. Furthermore, tenacious and flexible older persons better perceive their possibilities to participate in outdoor activities.”

“Our results indicate that persistency and the ability to adjust can function as personal resources for maintaining out-of-home mobility and participation in later life,” Siltanen says. “Moreover, it seems that while flexibility is especially important for maintaining autonomy, tenacity may be what gets older people out the door.”

Exercise: stop when sweating begins

Exercise: stop when sweating begins

As-Suyuti in "Medicine of the Prophet" said, " Know then that moderate exercise is a most potent means of preserving health. It warms the organs and dissolves waste products and renders the body light and active. The time for this is after the descent of the food from the stomach. It accomplishes this in five or six hours, more or less according to the constitution of the individual and of the food. By moderate exercise is meant exercise which makes the skin red and glow. When sweating begins, then it is proper to cease. That which increases the sweat is called heavy exercise.

The long term effect of exercise in early life

The long term effect of exercise in early life

A July 2017 study at the University of Auckland found that “bone retains a "memory" of exercise’s effects long after the exercise is ceased, and this bone memory continues to change the way the body metabolises a high-fat diet … This is the first demonstration of a long-lasting effect of exercise past puberty.”

 

Source: EurekAlert!, the online, global news service operated by AAAS, the science society.

Women’s bone health: a daily minute of running

Women’s bone health: a daily minute of running

A July 2017 study by the University of Exeter found that, “A single minute of exercise each day is linked to better bone health in women, new research shows.” The researchers 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.”

 

 

 

 

Source: EurekAlert!, the online, global news service operated by AAAS, the science society.

Exercise to reduce bone fat

Exercise to reduce bone fat

May 2017 research concluded that, “exercising burns the fat found within bone marrow and offers evidence that this process improves bone quality and the amount of bone in a matter of weeks.”

The study also suggests that, “obese individuals - who often have worse bone quality - may derive even greater bone health benefits from exercising than their lean counterparts.”

 

 

Exercise and Diabetes 2

Exercise and Diabetes 2

In an April 2017 study, at the University of Turku, Finland it was found that, “high-intensity interval training … increases glucose metabolism in muscles as well as insulin sensitivity in type 2 diabetes [and] … after a two-week training period, the glucose uptake in thigh muscles returned to a normal level.”

 

 

Running a Marathon impacts on kidneys in short term

Running a Marathon impacts on kidneys in short term

A March 2017 study by Yale University found that, “the physical stress of running a marathon can cause short-term kidney injury. Although kidneys of the examined runners fully recovered within two days post-marathon, the study raises questions concerning potential long-term impacts of this strenuous activity at a time when marathons are increasing in popularity.”

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2017-03/yu-mrm032317.php

Daily Exercise for Children

Daily Exercise for Children

A March 2017 study concludes that, “as little as 10 minutes a day of high-intensity physical activity could help some children reduce their risk of developing heart problems and metabolic diseases such as diabetes”.

"The results suggest that substituting modest amounts of vigorous physical activity for longer-duration light exercise may have cardiometabolic benefits above and beyond those conveyed by moderate activity and the avoidance of sedentary behavior," said Dr Justin B. Moore of Wake Forest School of Medicine.

 

 

Exercise and Rest

Exercise and Rest

Recent Research

The daily target of 10,000 steps is popular, but a 2016 study suggests that there are health benefits from a lower number particularly where the steps are more intense and that limiting the amount of time sitting or being inactive is also beneficial.  Another 2016 study suggests that "interrupting sitting time improves blood sugar control in people with type 2 diabetes".

A 2016 study suggests that short-term sleep deprivation can affect heart function and this has implications for those doing shift work and those who struggle to get good quality sleep.

 

Some advice from the scholars

Ibn Qayyim Al-Jawziyya in Medicine of the Prophet the subject of exercise from the view of helping the body get rid of the waste products of digestion and helping it remove obstructions. He advises that movement helps digestion and evacuation by warming the body. He recommends a moderate amount of exercise, at the proper time along with other correct lifestyle habits.

The proper time for exercise is after food has digested.

Moderate exercise is when the skin is red and body is moist. Ibn Qayyim advises that when sweat pours down the body that is excessive.

Ibn Qayyim advises that for every limb and faculty (including the soul and the brain) there is an exercise.

Ibn Qayyim notes that the standing in prayer by night is one of the most beneficial things to preserve health and prevent illness.

As-Suyuti in Medicine of the Prophet advises that exercise should stop when the sweating starts.

Ibn Sina is quoted as saying in “Avicenna’s Medicine” that exercises should be varied and also suitable for one's age, strength and medical condition. He outlines massage, warm-up and warm-down rules and suggests that in certain types of individual exercise may cause disease.

 

Image: By Mike H from Seattle, USA - Tai chi, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=4679243