Want to cut your odds of catching the flu this year? Hit the gym. New research shows regular exercise over a long term may increase the effectiveness of annual flu vaccinations, particularly in older men.
The study, published in the journal Age, found men who were consistently active for two decades or longer had significantly greater levels of antibodies, which fight an influenza infection, than inactive men, the Wall Street Journal
What’s more, the benefits of activity were similar for moderately active men or more intense exercisers, the study found.
To reach their conclusions, researchers at the University of São Paulo in Brazil recruited 61 men, age 65 to 85, who got flu shots for the previous five years and tracked their activity levels and flu infection rates.
The findings echo past studies that have suggested physical activity can enhance the body’s immune system in general.
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