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Twin Brothers Show Examples of the Benefits of Exercise

Twin Brothers Show Examples of the Benefits of Exercise

Eye Opening Finnish Study of 12 Identical Twins - Followed Over 3 Years

SILVER SPRING, MD – March 31, 2015 – If you ever want to see living, breathing proof that exercise has many beneficial side effects, check out this recent fitness study on twins from Finland.  The Finnish study, published this month in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, compared 10 sets of male identical twins and the effects of exercising vs. being inactive.

The 10 sets of twins, each with an age of 10 years old, were raised in the same environment.  Then, their exercise habits changed substantially after they left their childhood homes. They were tracked and measured over a three-year period.  Throughout the study, the diets for the twins were very similar, which put even more attention on impact of exercise.  In each case, one twin exercised at a healthy rate while the other twin had a sedentary lifestyle.

The results of the study, which were summarized in a New York Times blog by Gretchen Reynolds, were profound. Here are some of the areas where the more active twins showed distinct life benefits from exercise:Twins

  • Lower body fat
  • Lower risk of type 2 diabetes
  • Reduced signs of insulin resistance
  • Lower signals of metabolic problems
  • Higher endurance capacities
  • More grey matter – especially in areas of the brain being involved with coordination


“All of these differences in the young men’s bodies and brains had developed during their few, brief years of divergent workouts, underscoring how rapidly and robustly exercising — or not — can affect health," said Dr. Urho Kujala,
a professor of sports and exercise medicine at the University of Jyvaskyla (Finland) who oversaw the study.

“The results of this study are amazing. This further emphasizes the power of physical activity in the lives of all human beings, which starts with quality physical education in schools for our children and regular exercise for all Americans,” says Cameron Jacobs, Manager of Research and Social Media at PHIT America. “I am always looking for more evidence of the value of activity and fitness and this research was compelling. Exercise is preventive medicine and helps our mind, too.”