Study under review: Exercise Versus No Exercise for the Occurrence, Severity, and Duration of Acute Respiratory Infections
Acute respiratory infections (ARIs) are a very common disease and cause an estimated 4.25 million deaths per year worldwide. By definition, ARIs last less than 30 days, and are typically classified as “upper” or “lower” based on the location of the infection relative to the vocal cords. Figure 1 depicts how the upper and lower respiratory tract are divided. Upper ARIs include tonsillitis, sinusitis, and the common cold. Lower ARIs are usually more dangerous and include bronchitis and pneumonia.
The treatment of ARIs varies but typically involves rest, anti-inflammatory drugs, and hydration. If bacteria or fungi are responsible for the ARI, antibiotics and antifungals may be used, respectively.
Exercise can be low cost and easy to implement, and it is known to improve general health by increasing VO2Max, strength, body composition, metabolic health, and immunity. Given its effect on these aspects of health, it’s possible that exercise could also help reduce the frequency and severity of ARIs, which has been supported by some observational studies. Although there are several randomized controlled trials investigating this effect, the last systematic review on the topic was done in 2015. Since then, several more studies have come out on the topic, but no further systematic reviews have been done. This prompted the authors of the 2015 review to update their findings.
Acute respiratory infections (ARIs) are the most common disease that kill more than 4.25 million people worldwide every year. Exercise is low cost, easy to implement, and can improve many facets of health, including immunity, but no reviews on the impact of exercise on ARIs have been conducted since 2015.
Other Articles in Issue #69 (July 2020)
Deep Dive: The diet dilemma—should you follow your heart?
A new meta-analysis suggests that the best diets for weight loss and cardiovascular health are those you can stick with.
NERD News: Curtailing COVID-19’s gains at the gym
News out of Norway lightly suggests that taking some precautions can help gymgoers can work out safely. But there are also several reasons to interpret this study cautiously.
Deep Dive: Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) Diet and Blood Pressure
The DASH diet lowers blood pressure to roughly the same extent regardless of your baseline pressure. And every little bit helps.
Adding protein to carbohydrates for better endurance performance
Supplementing protein and carbs boosts endurance more than carbs alone, but it may just come down to calories.
Shedding weight and fat with L-carnitine: fact or fiction?
L-carnitine supplementation seems to shed weight, but the effect size also slims down when examining only high-quality studies.
Interview: Ray Dorsey, MD
Neurologist and author Ray Dorsey gives some tips regarding what can be done to reduce the risk of Parkinson's disease.
Use it or lose it — high protein or not!
High protein supplementation didn't help maintain muscle after three days of immobility. But "high protein" is a relative term...