Health Advice



You're never too old to benefit from strength training

By Michael Roizen, M.D. on

At age 76, Sylvester Stallone advocates for making "exercise your hobby instead of your enemy." Then, "it will always make you better than you were before." I hope when you're his age you have the same get-up-and-go. There's no reason not to, now that a study in JAMA Network Open explains a good way to accomplish that goal -- build your muscle strength.

The researchers looked at info on 115,489 participants, ages 65 to 74 and did a follow-up around 7.9 years later. The goal was to determine how much muscle-strengthening activity is needed when you're age 65-plus to extend your health and longevity.

The researchers found that doing muscle-strengthening on its own for two to three or four to six times weekly (not more!) reduced the risk of death from all causes by 83% and 79% respectively. That's compared to doing it one or fewer times a week.

Doing moderate to vigorous aerobics on its own for 150-300 minutes or more than 300 minutes weekly reduced the risk of death over the same time period by 75% and 68% respectively. That's compared to getting less than 10 minutes a week.

When two to three strength-training sessions were combined with more than 10 minutes of aerobics weekly, the risk of death was reduced by 91%.

Clearly, as you age, muscle strengthening is vital. It helps maintain a healthy metabolism, prevents falls and protects bones. So, don't limit your workouts to aerobics. That way, at 90 you'll be prepared to be the new 40 when the "Great Age Reboot" occurs.



Health pioneer Michael Roizen, M.D., is chief wellness officer emeritus at the Cleveland Clinic and author of four No. 1 New York Times bestsellers. His next book is "The Great Age Reboot: Cracking the Longevity Code for a Younger Tomorrow." Do you have a topic Dr. Mike should cover in a future column? If so, please email

(c)2022 Michael Roizen, M.D.

Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.

(c) 2022 Michael Roizen, M.D. Distributed by King Features Syndicate, Inc.



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