MAY 02, 2024 5:30 PM PDT

Taking the Stairs May Help You Live Longer

WRITTEN BY: Savannah Logan

New research presented at the European Society of Cardiology (ESC) Preventive Cardiology 2024 Annual Congress suggests that taking the stairs regularly may help you live a longer life.

The meta-analysis included nine studies with over 480,000 participants. The studies all linked stair climbing to health outcomes, and the number of flights of stairs and speed of climbing the stairs were not taken into account. The specific aim of the study was to determine whether climbing stairs regularly as a form of physical activity is related to the risk of dying prematurely or developing cardiovascular disease.

The results showed that taking the stairs regularly was associated with a 24% lower risk of death from any cause compared to never taking the stairs. Similarly, taking the stairs regularly was associated with a 39% lower risk of dying from cardiovascular disease compared to never taking the stairs. Taking the stairs was further linked to a lower risk of developing different types of cardiovascular disease, including heart attack, stroke, and heart failure.

The authors noted that taking the stairs whenever possible will likely be good for your health and especially your heart. Additionally, the results of the study suggested that the more stairs climbed, the greater the benefits, although those results have yet to be confirmed.

In general, 150 minutes per week of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity is recommended for optimal health and fitness. However, any amount of exercise is better than no exercise, especially for the heart. Short bursts of activity throughout the day through stair climbing can lead to better heart health and a positive overall health impact. Cardiovascular disease is largely preventable through healthy lifestyle habits, but it is currently the number one cause of death in the U.S. and worldwide.

Sources: ESC, Science Daily

About the Author
Doctorate (PhD)
Savannah (she/her) is a scientific writer specializing in cardiology at Labroots. Her background is in medical writing with significant experience in obesity, oncology, and infectious diseases. She has conducted research in microbial biophysics, optics, and education. She received her Ph.D. from the University of Oregon.
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