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Healthy Living Really Will Pay Off for You

By on March 6, 2012

Living healthy in your younger years does pay off later in life. Young adults who don’t drink heavily, avoid tobacco, eat healthy, exercise  and stay  lean lower their risk of heart failure in middle-age according to U.S. researchers.

Kiang Liu, a professor at Northwestern Feinberg School of  Medicine in Chicago, said the majority of people who maintained a healthy  lifestyle in their 20s remain in the low-risk category in their middle-age  years. The study published in the journal Circulation found when the participants’  average age was 24, nearly 44% had a low cardiovascular disease risk  profile, but 20 years later, just 24.5% fell into that category.

In addition, 60% of those who maintained all five healthy lifestyles  reached middle age with a low cardiovascular risk profile, compared with fewer  than 5% who followed none of the healthy lifestyles.

“The problem is few adults can maintain ideal cardiovascular health factors as  they age,” Liu said. “Many middle-age adults develop unhealthy  diets, gain weight and aren’t as physically active. Such lifestyles, of course,  lead to high blood pressure and cholesterol, diabetes and elevated  cardiovascular risk.”

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