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Solon: Recent research findings on fitness and Covid-19

Fitness Station

GOOD day to one and all!

For the past few months we’ve been hearing about how fitness and exercise are essential to our lives. The adage that a fitter person can fight off the virus better seems to be true.

In a research study submitted to the Mayo Clinic Proceedings, investigators sought to examine the relationship between fitness levels and Covid-19 hospitalization. The researchers identified 246 patients who had a fitness test and also tested positive for Covid-19. Eighty-nine of these subjects were hospitalized due to Covid-19. By measuring METs, a measure for fitness and oxygen consumption, researchers were able to quantify each patient’s fitness levels. It was found in the study that METs were significantly lower for patients who were hospitalized.

What does this bode for us?

The findings of the study support the important relationship between cardiorespiratory fitness levels and health outcomes. We now know that exercise capacity is independently and inversely associated with the likelihood of hospitalization due to Covid-19. What the research does not say however, is if maximal exercise capacity is associated with lower risks of complications due to viral infections, such as Covid-19. We also see the inverse relationship between cancer risk and physical activity. Overall, exercise and improving our fitness bodes well for disease prevention.

If you haven’t been exercising yet, this could be a good time to start. Do it in a safe manner, preferably outdoors, with social distancing applied. As always, if you have a medical condition, it’s best to consult your doctor before embarking on a fitness regimen.

Happy Sunday! Exercise safely.


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