Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Exercise helps with...

Exercise helps with autoimmune disorders

ADELAIDE, Australia (UPI) -- Low-impact aerobic exercise -- walking and cycling -- can reduce fatigue in adults with chronic autoimmune conditions, say Australian researchers.

Dr. Jane Neill of Flinders University in Adelaide examined 162 research studies published between 1987 and 2006, analyzing 36 in detail.

Neill says that there was evidence that people with conditions such as multiple sclerosis, rheumatoid arthritis and systemic lupus erythematosus could benefit from exercise that gradually increased in intensity, duration and frequency.

"Fatigue is a major symptom in all three conditions and can cause a range of physical, psychological and social problems," says Neill. "Our review showed that aerobic exercise can significantly reduce fatigue and that some behavioral, nutritional and physiological interventions are also very effective."

Studies reviewed by the team tested 38 interventions on more than 1,700 patients. The effective aerobic exercise programs lasted an average of 12 weeks, with participants exercising for 30 to 60 minutes, three times a week, according to the review published in the Journal of Advanced Nursing.

"There is good evidence that people experiencing fatigue from chronic autoimmune conditions can benefit from a range of non-medicinal interventions," says Neill.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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