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The Villages
Monday, January 30, 2023

Exercise helps prevent hospitalization and death from COVID-19 

Dr. Gabe Mirkin

A study of almost 200,000 adults in Southern California found that those who exercised for as little as 11 minutes a week were far less likely to be hospitalized from COVID-19 than those who did not exercise (Amer J of Prevent, Med. Dec 14, 2022). Those who exercised at least 30 minutes most days were four times more likely to survive COVID-19 than those who do not exercise That same group had reported earlier that, of more than 48,000 patients at the Kaiser Permanente health care system in Southern California, those who almost never exercised were at much higher risk of severe outcomes from COVID-19, including death, than patients of the same age who were quite active (Br J Sports Med, Apr 13, 2021;55:1099–1105). A review of many studies shows that exercise helps reduce the severity of many chronic diseases and infections (Compr Physiol, Apr, 2012;2(2):1143–1211).

Reinfection Rates from COVID-19 are High: The relative protection of prior infection against reinfection with the later Omicron variant is 56 percent, compared with 92 percent for the earlier Delta variant (N Engl J Med, 2022;386(13):1288-1290).  A study from Iceland found that the proportion of persons who become re-infected with COVID-19 at 18 months during the Omicron wave was 11.5 percent and the same for both one or two boosters. Reinfection rate was highest, at 15.1 percent, among those aged 18 to 29 years. Fewer reinfections occurred among older individuals (JAMA Intern Med, 2022;182(2):179-184).

Dr. Gabe Mirkin is a Villager. Learn more at www.drmirkin.com

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