People who have asthma may shy away from physical activity, thinking that exercise may trigger an attack. However, a new study published in The Cochrane Library is now saying that it’s safe for people with asthma to exercise. In fact, in some cases, it may even help keep the condition's symptoms at bay.

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Researchers reviewed previous studies, which looked at whether people with asthma were better or worse off when they exercised. According to the results, patients who exercised at least 20 minutes twice a week over a period of four weeks showed symptoms that were no worse than those experienced by patients who stayed sedentary. There was even one thing that the more active participants had over the others--apparently, those who spent time swimming, cycling, or circuit training, among other forms of exercise, were more likely to have better cardiovascular health. In addition, some studies have reported that exercise helps patients improve their quality of life as well.

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There are a few exceptions to the study. An exercise-induced asthma, for example, is not unheard of. If you feel like your asthma belongs to this category, consult your doctor first so that you'll know what precautions to take before working out. For others, though, exercising moderately may prove beneficial. At the very least, exercising can help you rebuild lost muscle mass, which in turn might make future bouts of physical activity easier for yourself.

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(Photo by evobrained via sxc.hu)

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