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Physical Activity, Health Benefits, and Mortality Risk

1 , 2 , 3 , *

ISRN Cardiology

International Scholarly Research Network

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      Abstract

      A plethora of epidemiologic evidence from large studies supports unequivocally an inverse, independent, and graded association between volume of physical activity, health, and cardiovascular and overall mortality. This association is evident in apparently healthy individuals, patients with hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus, and cardiovascular disease, regardless of body weight. Moreover, the degree of risk associated with physical inactivity is similar to, and in some cases even stronger than, the more traditional cardiovascular risk factors. The exercise-induced health benefits are in part related to favorable modulations of cardiovascular risk factors observed by increased physical activity or structured exercise programs. Although the independent contribution of the exercise components, intensity, duration, and frequency to the reduction of mortality risk is not clear, it is well accepted that an exercise volume threshold defined at caloric expenditure of approximately 1,000 Kcal per week appears to be necessary for significant reduction in mortality risk. Further reductions in risk are observed with higher volumes of energy expenditure. Physical exertion is also associated with a relatively low and transient increase in risk for cardiac events. This risk is significantly higher for older and sedentary individuals. Therefore, such individuals should consult their physician prior to engaging in exercise.“Walking is man’s best medicine”Hippocrates

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      Most cited references 160

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      Reduction in the incidence of type 2 diabetes with lifestyle intervention or metformin.

      Type 2 diabetes affects approximately 8 percent of adults in the United States. Some risk factors--elevated plasma glucose concentrations in the fasting state and after an oral glucose load, overweight, and a sedentary lifestyle--are potentially reversible. We hypothesized that modifying these factors with a lifestyle-intervention program or the administration of metformin would prevent or delay the development of diabetes. We randomly assigned 3234 nondiabetic persons with elevated fasting and post-load plasma glucose concentrations to placebo, metformin (850 mg twice daily), or a lifestyle-modification program with the goals of at least a 7 percent weight loss and at least 150 minutes of physical activity per week. The mean age of the participants was 51 years, and the mean body-mass index (the weight in kilograms divided by the square of the height in meters) was 34.0; 68 percent were women, and 45 percent were members of minority groups. The average follow-up was 2.8 years. The incidence of diabetes was 11.0, 7.8, and 4.8 cases per 100 person-years in the placebo, metformin, and lifestyle groups, respectively. The lifestyle intervention reduced the incidence by 58 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 48 to 66 percent) and metformin by 31 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 17 to 43 percent), as compared with placebo; the lifestyle intervention was significantly more effective than metformin. To prevent one case of diabetes during a period of three years, 6.9 persons would have to participate in the lifestyle-intervention program, and 13.9 would have to receive metformin. Lifestyle changes and treatment with metformin both reduced the incidence of diabetes in persons at high risk. The lifestyle intervention was more effective than metformin.
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        Seventh report of the Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure.

        The National High Blood Pressure Education Program presents the complete Seventh Report of the Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure. Like its predecessors, the purpose is to provide an evidence-based approach to the prevention and management of hypertension. The key messages of this report are these: in those older than age 50, systolic blood pressure (BP) of greater than 140 mm Hg is a more important cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk factor than diastolic BP; beginning at 115/75 mm Hg, CVD risk doubles for each increment of 20/10 mm Hg; those who are normotensive at 55 years of age will have a 90% lifetime risk of developing hypertension; prehypertensive individuals (systolic BP 120-139 mm Hg or diastolic BP 80-89 mm Hg) require health-promoting lifestyle modifications to prevent the progressive rise in blood pressure and CVD; for uncomplicated hypertension, thiazide diuretic should be used in drug treatment for most, either alone or combined with drugs from other classes; this report delineates specific high-risk conditions that are compelling indications for the use of other antihypertensive drug classes (angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin-receptor blockers, beta-blockers, calcium channel blockers); two or more antihypertensive medications will be required to achieve goal BP (<140/90 mm Hg, or <130/80 mm Hg) for patients with diabetes and chronic kidney disease; for patients whose BP is more than 20 mm Hg above the systolic BP goal or more than 10 mm Hg above the diastolic BP goal, initiation of therapy using two agents, one of which usually will be a thiazide diuretic, should be considered; regardless of therapy or care, hypertension will be controlled only if patients are motivated to stay on their treatment plan. Positive experiences, trust in the clinician, and empathy improve patient motivation and satisfaction. This report serves as a guide, and the committee continues to recognize that the responsible physician's judgment remains paramount.
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          Prevention of type 2 diabetes mellitus by changes in lifestyle among subjects with impaired glucose tolerance.

          Type 2 diabetes mellitus is increasingly common, primarily because of increases in the prevalence of a sedentary lifestyle and obesity. Whether type 2 diabetes can be prevented by interventions that affect the lifestyles of subjects at high risk for the disease is not known. We randomly assigned 522 middle-aged, overweight subjects (172 men and 350 women; mean age, 55 years; mean body-mass index [weight in kilograms divided by the square of the height in meters], 31) with impaired glucose tolerance to either the intervention group or the control group. Each subject in the intervention group received individualized counseling aimed at reducing weight, total intake of fat, and intake of saturated fat and increasing intake of fiber and physical activity. An oral glucose-tolerance test was performed annually; the diagnosis of diabetes was confirmed by a second test. The mean duration of follow-up was 3.2 years. The mean (+/-SD) amount of weight lost between base line and the end of year 1 was 4.2+/-5.1 kg in the intervention group and 0.8+/-3.7 kg in the control group; the net loss by the end of year 2 was 3.5+/-5.5 kg in the intervention group and 0.8+/-4.4 kg in the control group (P<0.001 for both comparisons between the groups). The cumulative incidence of diabetes after four years was 11 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 6 to 15 percent) in the intervention group and 23 percent (95 percent confidence interval, 17 to 29 percent) in the control group. During the trial, the risk of diabetes was reduced by 58 percent (P<0.001) in the intervention group. The reduction in the incidence of diabetes was directly associated with changes in lifestyle. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented by changes in the lifestyles of high-risk subjects.
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            Author and article information

            Affiliations
            1Cardiology Department, Veterans Affairs Medical Center, 50 Irving Street NW, Washington, DC 20422, USA
            2Division of Cardiology, Department of Medicine, Georgetown University, 4000 Reservoir Road NW, Washington, DC 20057-2197, USA
            3Physical Therapy and Health Care Services, George Washington University, 2121 I Street, Washington, DC 20052, USA
            Author notes

            Academic Editors: H.-K. Kim and J. N. Myers

            Journal
            ISRN Cardiol
            ISRN Cardiol
            ISRN.CARDIOLOGY
            ISRN Cardiology
            International Scholarly Research Network
            2090-5580
            2090-5599
            2012
            30 October 2012
            : 2012
            23198160
            3501820
            10.5402/2012/718789
            Copyright © 2012 Peter Kokkinos.

            This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

            Categories
            Review Article

            Cardiovascular Medicine

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