Regular running is highly linked to significantly less risk of health. It can significantly improve physical and mental health.

Many expert’s think human bodies are shaped the way they are because we evolved to be extremely effective endurance runner. The shapes of our hips and feet, the length of our legs, our shock-absorbing spinal discs, and our ability to sweat make it possible for us to run mile after mile.

So it’s perhaps no surprise that running is strongly associated with a number of benefits for our bodies and brains.

To try and find out, the researchers systematically reviewed relevant published research, conference presentations, and doctoral theses and dissertations in a broad range of academic databases.

They looked for studies on the association between running/jogging and the risk of death from all causes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.

When the study data were pooled, any amount of running was associated with a 27% lower risk of death from all causes for both sexes, compared with no running.

And it was associated with a 30% lower risk of death from cardiovascular disease, and a 23% lower risk of death from cancer.

Even small ‘doses’, for example, once weekly or less, lasting less than 50 minutes each time, and at a speed below 6 miles (8 km) an hour, still seemed to be associated with significant health/longevity benefits.

So running for 25 minutes less than the recommended weekly duration of vigorous physical activity could reduce the risk of death.

This makes running a potentially good option for those whose main obstacle to doing enough exercise is lack of time, suggest the researchers.

But upping ‘the dose’ wasn’t associated with a further lowering of the risk of death from any cause, the analysis showed.

Any amount of running is better than none, concluding, “increased rates of participation in running, regardless of its dose, would probably lead to substantial improvements in population health and longevity.”

(Source: Science Daily and business insider)