BBC随身英语: Slow walking and ageing 走路慢老得快

科学家们一直在寻找能让人们延长寿命,获得健康幸福生活的方法。本期 “随身英语” 围绕最新的一项研究展开讨论——这项研究称,人们在40多岁时走路的速度是他们的大脑和身体衰老程度的标志。走路速度较慢的人是不是应该加快步伐呢?

Vocabulary: health 词汇:健康

Getting old might not be something that’s yetto cross your mind. Butageingis inevitably goingto get the better of usone day, so it’s something I’m sure we’d all like control. It would be great to have a long, healthy and happy life, and that’s why scientists are constantly seeking out evidence that will show us what we need to do to achievelongevity.

We all know that regular exercise is good for us. In recent years we’ve been told to aim to walk 10,000 steps a day to remain healthy, although other advice to do threebrisk10-minute walks a day is thought to be even moreeffective. But the latest piece of research might puta spring in your stepif you’re someone who walks at afast pace. That’s because, according to scientists, the speed at which people walk in their 40s is a sign of how much theirbrains, as well as their bodies, are ageing.

The BBC’s Philippa Roxby writes that tests on 1,000 people from New Zealand born in the 1970s found thatslower walkerstended to show signs of "accelerated ageing". Theirlungs, teeth andimmune systemswere inworse shapethan those who walked faster. Andto add insult to injury, the study found not only did slower walkers' bodies age more quickly, their faces looked older and they had smaller brains. Professor Terrie E Moffitt, lead author of the study, told the BBC: "[it] found that a slow walk is a problem sign decades before old age."

This might be seen asa wake-up callfor people with a slowergaitwho might feel it’s time towork outand get fitter. But it might be too late; researchers writing in JAMA Network Open say they were able to predict the walking speed of 45-year-olds using the results of intelligence, language and motor skills tests from when they were aged three. They also suggest that even in early life, there are signs showing which people will go on to have a healthier life.

So, what’s the point of knowing that a slower walking pace might mean a smaller brain? Well, researchers say measuring walking speed at a younger age, and understanding what this might mean, could be a way of testingtreatmentsto slow human ageing. This might help usmake lifestyle changeswhile we’re still young and healthy. Any steps we can take to prolong a good mental and physical state isa no brainer!

词汇表

to cross sb’s mind (念头)闪现,想起

ageing 衰老

to get the better of sb 击败

longevity 长寿

brisk 轻快的

effective 有效的

a spring in your step 步伐轻快

fast pace 快节奏,快步伐

brains 大脑

a slower walker 走路速度慢的人

accelerated ageing 加速老化

immune system 免疫系统

lung 肺部

in worse shape 情况更糟糕

to add insult to injury 往伤口撒盐

a wake-up call 警示

gait 步伐,步态

work out 锻炼身体

treatment 治疗方法

make lifestyle changes 改变生活习惯

a no brainer 容易理解的事情

测验与练习

1.阅读课文并回答问题。

1. Which is thought to be better exercise – walking 10,000 steps a day or doing three brisk walks a day?

2. According to this research, how big were the brains of people who in their mid-40s walked slowly?

3. True or false?By testing people’s walking speed at 45, scientists could predict who wouldgo on to have a healthier life.

4. What could the findings from this research be used for to help people lead a longer and healthier life?

5. Which word used in the article means: ‘make something last longer’?

2. 请在不参考课文的情况下完成下列练习。选择一个意思恰当的单词填入句子中的空格处。

1. I think the most _______ cure for a cold is drinking honey and lemon and getting plenty of rest!

longevityeffective treatments work out

2. The ferry was in a_______ than when I last sailed on it. I was worried it was going to sink!

worst shapeworse shapes worse shaped worse shape

3. My maths test results are a_______ that I need to study harder.

wake-up callno brainerwork outlifestyle change

4. I put my grandfather’s_______ down to a healthy diet and not smoking or drinking.

gaitmotor skillslongevitybrisk

5. When you were cooking chicken casserole, did it not_______ that our guests are all vegetarians?!

cross my mind crossed your mind cross your mind cross his mind

答案

1.阅读课文并回答问题。

1. Which is thought to be better exercise – walking 10,000 steps a day or doing three brisk walks a day?

In recent years we’ve been told to aim to walk 10,000 steps a day to remain healthy, although other advice to do three brisk 10-minute walks a day is thought to be even more effective.

2. According to this research, how big were the brains of people who, in their mid-40s, walked slowly?

The study found slower walkers had smaller brains.

3. True or false?By testing people’s walking speed at 45, scientists could predict who would go on to have a healthier life.

False. Researchers were able to predict the walking speed of 45-year-olds using the results of intelligence, language and motor skills tests from when they were aged three.

4. What could the findings from this research be used for to help people lead a longer and healthier life?

Researchers say measuring walking speed at a younger age, and knowing what this might mean, could be a way of testing treatments to slow human ageing.

5. Which word used in the article means: ‘make something last longer’?

Prolong (“Any steps we can take to keep to prolong a good mental and physical state is a no brainer!)

2. 请在不参考课文的情况下完成下列练习。选择一个意思恰当的单词填入句子中的空格处。

1. I think the mosteffectivecure for a cold is drinking honey and lemon and getting plenty of rest!

2. The ferry was in aworse shapethan when I last sailed on it. I was worried it was going to sink!

3. My maths test results are awake-up callthat I need to study harder.

4. I put my grandfather’slongevitydown to a healthy diet and not smoking or drinking.

5. When you were cooking chicken casserole, did it notcross your mindthat our guests are all vegetarians?!

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