April 17, 2020 | 11:38pm
Regular cardiovascular workouts may help protect future coronavirus patients from developing a severe complication and major cause of death known as acute respiratory distress syndrome
When it comes to fighting the coronavirus, exercise is preventative medicine, according to one new study.
Regular cardiovascular workouts may help protect future coronavirus patients from developing a severe complication and major cause of death known as acute respiratory distress syndrome, according to research from Zhen Yan of the University of Virginia School of Medicine.
Yan, the director of the Center for Skeletal Muscle Research at UVA’s Robert M. Berne Cardiovascular Research Center, recommends 30 minutes of cardiovascular training every day to help ward off the respiratory disease.
“We cannot live in isolation forever,” he said. “Regular exercise has far more health benefits than we know. The protection against this severe respiratory disease condition is just one of the many examples.”
Humans naturally produce the antioxidant, known as “extracellular superoxide dismutase” (EcSOD) — and exercise ramps up the production, Yan said.
Yan told Newsweek a session of biking, rowing or any other aerobic exercise can help prevent or at least reduce the severity of the lung disease (ARDS).
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has estimated between 20 and 42 percent of all patients hospitalized with COVID-19 will develop ARDS.
Research predating the pandemic suggested that approximately 45 percent of patients who develop severe ARDS will die, according to a news release from the University of Virginia Health System.
“EcSOD set a perfect example that we can learn from the biological process of exercise to advance medicine,” Yan said.
“While we strive to learn more about the mysteries about the superb benefits of regular exercise, we do not have to wait until we know everything.”