A new study that examined data from 340,000 patients has found that exercise is as good as prescribed drugs when it comes to treating heart disease, and it was found to be better than medication when treating stroke victims.
The study was a massive meta-analysis of 305 different trials that compared exercise versus pills in managing heart disease, stroke rehabilitation, and pre-diabetes. In terms of death rates, exercise is as good as drugs in most cases.
There were two exceptions. Diuretics, drugs used to treat heart failure, were much better than exercise—which is perhaps expected, given that it’s tough to exercise when your heart has failed. The other exception was in stroke patients, where exercise is in fact better than drugs.