When analyzing nearly 10 different studies, researchers found older adults who walked at a faster pace also noticed a longer life. Data for this study is published in a January 5 issue of JAMA.
Experts explain that estimating life expectancy numbers is a very important metric as individuals age, but can be relatively difficult to assess based on age and sex alone. Additional factors, like exercise frequency and intensity may also help determine how long an individual may live.
Even using exercise metrics has been discounted by some as a proper determination of life expectancy. However, when analyzing 9 different studies, researchers noticed that walking speed may play a role in how long an elder may expect to live.
Researchers noticed that walking speed became significant after the age of 75. As average walking speed increased, so did the predicted life expectancy for both men and women.
Using information from this cluster of studies may help experts formulate treatment plans for elderly individuals to assist in increasing the remaining years of life.
Additional research is required to properly assess if additional factors exist for increasing life expectancy.