An aging population across the globe brings with it an ever-increasing prevalence of preventable diseases of aging. Long-term maintenance of physical activity decreases the risk for such diseases, yet many individuals remain inactive. Chronic stress is identified as a salient feature in the social environment that impedes activity engagement. Using longitudinal, population studies, randomized controlled trials, ecological momentary assessments, and laboratory studies, my program of research focuses on the extent to which physical activity prevents or reverses the biological and psychological pathways through which stress experienced across the lifespan is hypothesized to promote disease. My research aims to (1) highlight the extent to which maintaining an active lifestyle modifies the impact of lifespan stress on disease pathogenesis, (2) advance novel intervention targets for health when highly stressed and inactive individuals are provided opportunities to be active, and (3) reveal the extent to which physical activity engagement alters psychological and biological responses to stress, and, in turn, how responses to stress impede or enhance the engagement of physical activity.
Welcome to the FAST Lab!
- Eli Puterman, PhD