Exercise wards off urinary incontinence in older women - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Exercise wards off urinary incontinence in older women

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A recent study reports that women who exercise on a regular basis are less likely to develop urinary incontinence.

The study, published in the March 2007 issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology, tracked the exercise habits of over 30,000 women.  Among the most active women - those who habitually exercised the equivalent of about an hour of walking a day - the risk of developing urinary incontinence was 20 percent to 25 percent lower than among the least active women.

Researchers theorize that the results are due to the fact that exercise may help strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, which help support proper bladder function.  Although maintaining a healthy weight helps reduce the risk of urinary incontinence, researchers found that what mattered most was the amount of exercise, not your weight. 

If you already have some type of urinary incontinence and are reluctant to exercise because of it, be sure to work carefully with your doctor to try managing or correcting the problem so that you can reap the many health benefits of regular exercise. 

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