Moderate physical activity is associated with a greater than 50% reduction in cardiovascular death in over-65s, according to research presented at ESC Congress 2016 today. The 12 year study in nearly 2500 adults aged 65 to 74 years found that moderate physical activity reduced the risk of an acute cardiovascular event by more than 30%. High levels of physical activity led to greater risk reductions.
The researchers classified self-reported physical activity as:
- Low: reading, watching TV or working in the household without much physical activity.
- Moderate: walking, cycling or practising other forms of light exercise (fishing, gardening, hunting) at least four hours per week.
- High: recreational sports (for example running, jogging, skiing, gymnastics, swimming, ball games or heavy gardening) or intense training or sports competitions at least three hours a week.
The investigators found that moderate and high leisure time physical activity were associated with a 31% and 45% reduced risk of an acute CVD event, respectively. Moderate and high leisure time physical activity were associated with a 54% and 66% reduction in CVD mortality.
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