Lifting weights can help to increase your life expectancy, a new study reveals.
Research from the University of Michigan found that those with strong abs and biceps are more likely to reach an older age than those who don’t.
Thankfully, those with dad bods don’t have to despair just yet.
Experts believe that you can work on your longevity by taking up a bit of strength training at the gym.
In a Health and Retirement study, researchers analysed data from around 8,300 men and women.
It measured how muscle strength affected overall health, in comparison to other factors such as smoking.
Scientists found that exercise that gets your heart rate up is the most beneficial.
They also showed that weight lifting is good for you, as it can keep you feeling youthful for longer.
Those with a weaker grip strength were 50% more likely to die prematurely than stronger individuals are.
Lead author Dr Kate Douchowny said: “Maintaining muscle strength throughout life – and especially in later life – is extremely important for longevity and ageing independently…
“Having hand grip strength be an integral part of routine care would allow for earlier interventions, which could lead to increased longevity and independence for individuals.”
If you’re lacking a bit in the abs department, it’s not too late to make a difference.
Previously, we revealed the best ways to develop your muscles without lifting weights.
Plenty of gym-goers ditch portion control in favour of high-protein and low-carbohydrate diets.
These regimes encourage the body to shed fat and build muscle, as the compounds work to repair tissue.
It can also prevent you from overeating, as protein helps you to feel fuller for longer.
So which foods should you incorporate into your diet to see the best results?
Here are five more protein rich foods for building muscle:
1. Nuts – if you snack on a 100g bag of mixed nuts, you can expect to take in around 20g of protein
2. Porridge – oats are rich in protein, containing 16.9g per 100g
3. Greek yoghurt – the creamy products can contain 10g of protein per 100 grams
4. Quinoa – the grain packs an impressive 14.1g of the nutrient in every 100g
5. Lentils – for every 100g you eat, you can expect to take in 9g of protein.