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Sexual, Urinary Health Boosted in Exercisers, Nonsmokers

Cigarettes, sedentary lifestyle linked to urological problems, studies show

MONDAY, May 31 (HealthDay News) -- For people who need more reasons to start exercising and steer clear of smoking, new research finds that moving around and rejecting cigarettes can improve urinary health in women and sexual health in men.

In one study, researchers surveyed more than 2,000 Finnish women, aged 18 to 79, about smoking and their urinary health.

After the investigators adjusted the statistics so they wouldn't be thrown off by factors such as medication use and lifestyle, the researchers found that former and current smokers were 1.8 to 2.7 times more likely to need to urinate urgently, and 1.7 to 3.0 times more likely to need to urinate more frequently compared to those who never smoked.

In another study, researchers examined surveys taken by 178 healthy men at a VA medical center in North Carolina.

Even after adjusting their statistics for factors such as age and race, the study authors found that those who exercised more often reported better sexual function.

The findings are scheduled to be released Monday at the annual meeting of the American Urological Association in San Francisco.

"We all know that smoking and being sedentary are not good for our health," Dr. Anthony Y. Smith, an association spokesman, said in a news release. "These data give us one more reason to stop smoking and start exercising."

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has guidelines for physical activity.

-- Randy Dotinga

SOURCE: American Urological Association, news release, May 31, 2010

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