New research from UCSF says that brief exercise can provide protection against the effects of stress-induced cell aging. The scientists learned that vigorous physical activity as brief as 42 minutes over a 3-day period, similar to federally recommended levels, can protect individuals from the effects of stress by reducing its impact on telomere length. Telomeres (pronounced TEEL-oh-meres) are tiny pieces of DNA that promote genetic stability and act as protective sheaths by keeping chromosomes from unraveling, much like plastic tips at the ends of shoelaces. A growing body of research suggests that short telomeres are linked to a range of health problems, including coronary heart disease and diabetes, as well as early death. "Telomere length is increasingly considered a biological marker of the accumulated wear and tear of living, integrating genetic influences, lifestyle behaviors, and stress," said Elissa Epel, PhD, who is one of the lead investigators and an associate professor in the UCSF Department of Psychiatry. "Even a moderate amount of vigorous exercise appears to provide a critical amount of protection for the telomeres." The findings build on previous UCSF research documenting that chronic psychological stress takes a significant toll on the human body by impacting the length of telomeres in immune cells. The new study has been published in the peer-reviewed online publication PLoS ONE. In the study, 62 post-menopausal women - many of whom were caring for spouses or parents with dementia-reported at the end of each day over three days the number of minutes of vigorous physical activity in which they had engaged. Vigorous activity in the study was defined as "increased heart rate and/or sweating." They also reported separately their perceptions of life stress that they had experienced during the prior month. Their blood's immune cells were examined for telomere length.Source: ANIRAS << Air Pollution Exposure Tied to Type 2 Diabetes Risk in Women Scientists Create Retina from Human Embryonic Stem Cells >> Recommended Reading Anti-aging Secrets to a Younger You Is there anyone in this world who fails to be swayed by the magic of youth? None, for when youth explodes joyously all Nature smiles! READ MORE Ageing and Sleep Sleep is a barometer of good health in the elderly. Sleep problems in the elderly are controlled by various external and internal factors. READ MORE Post Traumatic Stress Disorder Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), is a mental condition triggered by a traumatic event. PTSD treatment includes pyschotherapy, behavior therapy and medications. READ MORE Stress and the Gender Divide Stress has become entwined in the current lifestyle of a young working couple and has resulted in the rise in incidence of hypertension, diabetes and psychosomatic illnesses. READ MORE Andropause / Male Menopause Andropause or male menopause causing low libido in a man is due to decreasing level of male hormones, like testosterone. Symptoms of andropause are depression, irritability. READ MORE Heart Attack- Lifestyle risks Heart attack is the death of the heart muscle due to loss of blood supply. Simple guidelines to avoid heart attack are listed. READ MORE Is Your Man Moody? Women get confused by the behavior of men in their lives. It is time they realize that men too have frequent mood swings. READ MORE Palpitations And Arrhythmias Palpitations are unpleasant sensation of one’s own heartbeat. READ MORE Tips to Live Longer Though life is temporary and short, it is possible to maximize the span of our existence by living healthy and savoring every moment of life, read our tips to live longer READ MORE Most Popular on Medindia Fongitar (Zinc Pyrithionone) Nutam (400mg) (Piracetam) Color Blindness Calculator More News on: Parkinsons Disease Surgical TreatmentPalpitations And ArrhythmiasDiet Lifestyle and Heart DiseaseStress Relief Through Alternative MedicineStress and the Gender DivideAgeing and SleepAndropause / Male MenopauseTips to Live LongerHeart Attack- Lifestyle RisksIs Your Man Moody?