Statin use tied to less exercise
Nearly one-third of older Americans take statins to control their cholesterol and now a study published in JAMA Internal Medicine is suggesting that that could result in older men exercising less--behavior that could end up diminishing the effectiveness of the medication.
Researchers analyzed data on men 65 and over and follow-up information gathered seven years later. They compared physical activity among statin users and non-users and found that men in the former group got an average of 40 minutes less exercise per week.
The researchers were concerned with the findings since older adults need exercise to maintain a proper weight, prevent cardiovascular disease and maintain physical strength and function. The study did not investigate why older men exercise less on statins, but side effects of taking statins may be a factor. These include muscle pain, fatigue and muscle weakness. Up to 30 percent of people taking statins experience muscle pain, and some report lack and energy and feeling weak and tired.
Researchers say even moderate amounts of exercise can make a big difference, and people may want to consult with their doctor to determine if statin use is still appropriate.
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