Can Exercise in Childhood Affect Adult Health? Maybe! Read This! by Mei Marcie
Researchers from Liggins Institute University of Auckland in New Zealand studied the effects of exercise in childhood and bone health and metabolism in later life. They conducted tests on male rats, which were fed high-fat diets, and further divided by whether they had a sedentary life, exercised later in life, and exercised early in life (baby rats were given running wheels).
The researchers discovered that those in the high-fat, early exercise group had reduced gene expression related to inflammation even after 60 days of stopping the exercise. Inflammation has the potential to lead to many chronic diseases. The mice that were fed high-fat diets but exercised when young still got fat but did not experience negative effects of the high-fat diet. The study was published in the journal Frontiers in Physiology.
Although this study was conducted on mice and not conclusive, it is interesting and useful to remind us that exercise is a must for our kids. The long-lasting effects of childhood exercise should motivate families and schools to encourage physical fitness.