London - Just eight weeks of exercise may be a life saver for middle-aged men.

A new study shows that after two months, they had lower levels of a range of compounds in the blood associated with furred arteries, heart disease and diabetes.

Thirty middle-aged men were split into two groups: one group exercised intensely every other day: the other group did no exercise.

The exercise included running and jumping, and started at 15 minutes but increased to 35 minutes.

The results, in the journal Science And Sports, showed that compared to a control group, the exercisers had raised levels of adiponectin - a compound thought to reduce inflammation - and lower levels of leptin, which may increase inflammation and is found in high levels in those with cardiovascular disease. - Daily Mail