Tiredness may show high early death risk in older people

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Have you ever felt absolutely exhausted after a day of walking, tidying up, or even spending time in the garden?

Well, researchers from the University of Pittsburgh in the United States have uncovered something fascinating about this very feeling, especially in older adults.

They discovered that for people aged 60 and above, how fatigued they feel after engaging in certain activities could actually signal how much longer they have to live. This might sound a bit alarming, but let’s dive into what this means.

The researchers embarked on a study involving 2,906 individuals, all of whom were 60 years old or older.

These participants were asked to rate, on a scale from 0 to 5, their anticipated level of tiredness after completing various tasks, such as a leisurely 30-minute stroll, light household chores, or more strenuous activities like heavy gardening.

What the scientists found was eye-opening: those who reported higher levels of tiredness (scoring 25 or above on the scale) were more than twice as likely to die within the following 2.7 years compared to those with lower scores.

This connection between feeling more physically exhausted and a shorter expected lifespan was significant, even when other factors that typically influence longevity were taken into account.

This study isn’t just about the link between tiredness and lifespan; it also highlights the usefulness of a specific tool for measuring fatigue.

This tool, known as the Pittsburgh Fatigability Scale, was developed back in 2014 and is now available in 11 languages. It’s proven to be an effective measure for gauging how tired people feel after certain activities.

What Does This Mean for Us?

The findings of this study serve as a crucial reminder, particularly for the older population, that the level of tiredness you feel after physical activity might be more than just a temporary inconvenience. It could actually be an indicator of your overall health and longevity.

If you or someone you know frequently feels very tired after doing everyday tasks, it might be worth discussing with a healthcare provider. This could be a sign that your body is trying to tell you something important about your health.

The research conducted by Nancy W. Glynn and her team was published in The Journals of Gerontology: Series A. It offers a new perspective on the importance of paying attention to our bodies and the signals they send us, especially as we age.

By understanding and monitoring our levels of fatigue, we might gain valuable insights into our overall well-being and longevity.

If you care about nutrition, please read studies about the best time to take vitamins to prevent heart disease, and vitamin D supplements strongly reduce cancer death.

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