Definition: "An ergogenic aid is any substance or phenomenon that enhances performance "
Cyclist lives longer
Do you secretly look down on all those 'losers' who cycle to work every day through wind and weather? Or have to get their groceries on a bike? That's unnecessary. Those 'losers' will probably live longer than inactive people who move mainly by motorized means in their daily lives.
In total, the researchers obtained data from just under half a million study participants. During the studies, 22415 study participants died; 5445 of these died from a cardiovascular disease.
When the researchers tried to find out exactly what the healthiest amount of cycling was, they were generally unable to find an optimal amount for the risk of death. 'More' was synonymous with 'better'. With every 50 minutes that the study participants cycled at a leisurely pace [5 MET-hours] each week, their mortality risk decreased by 9 percent.
When the researchers looked specifically at the risk of death from cardiovascular disease, the picture was different. Then a weekly effort of 15 MET-hours was optimal. If you cycle slowly, that comes down to 150 minutes per week.
Click on the figure below for a larger version.
Perhaps you should take this last outcome with a grain of salt. The association may be the result of variables that the researchers were unable to adjust for completely. In many countries, cycling is something for people who are at the bottom of the social ladder - and at the bottom of the social ladder you will usually find a concentration of lifestyle factors that increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.