Increasing physical activity at any intensity is good for health, but new research published today in European Heart Journal It shows that there is a greater reduction in the risk of cardiovascular disease when more of this activity is of at least moderate intensity. The study, led by researchers at the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR), Leicester Center for Biomedical Research and the University of Cambridge, analyzed physical activity data measured by an accelerometer at the wrist from more than 88,000 UK Biobank participants.
Current physical activity guidelines from the UK’s top medical officials recommend that adults should aim to be active every day, and adults should do 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity (eg brisk walking) or 75 minutes of vigorous activity (eg: running). every week. Volume of physical activity is defined as intensity of activity multiplied by time, but until recently it was not clear whether volume of total physical activity was most important for health, or if more vigorous physical activity conferred additional benefits.
“Most large-scale studies to date have used questionnaires to identify participants,” said Dr. Paddy Dempsey, Research Fellow at the University of Leicester and the Medical Research Council Epidemiology Unit at the University of Cambridge, and first author on the paper. Accurately, especially when it comes to low-intensity daily activities like washing the car or sorting laundry. Without accurate records of physical activity duration and intensity, it was not possible to sort the contribution of more vigorous physical activity from the contribution of total volume of physical activity.
“Wearable devices have helped us to accurately detect and record the intensity and duration of movement of 90,000 individuals participating in the UK Biobank, and we recently published an analysis of wearable data demonstrating that moderate and vigorous activity further reduces the overall risk of early-onset death: Vigorous physical activity may also reduce the risk of injury Cardiovascular diseaseIn addition to the benefit that we note from total physical activity, as it stimulates the body to adapt to the high effort required. This is what we set out to investigate in the research published today.”
The authors investigated the relationship between volume and intensity of physical activity and the incidence of cardiovascular disease in 88,412 middle-aged adults without cardiovascular disease in Great Britain. These individuals wore a research-grade activity tracker on their dominant wrist for a week while participating in the UK Biobank study. The movement data they collected were used to calculate the total volume of activity, and the authors also worked out the percentage of this volume that was achieved with moderate and vigorous intensity activity. The number of cardiovascular events, including Ischemic heart disease or cerebrovascular diseaseIt was then recorded among study participants over an average follow-up period of 6.8 years.
The authors found that total volume of physical activity was strongly associated with a decrease in Risks of cardiovascular diseaseThey also showed that having more total volume of physical activity from moderate to vigorous physical activity was associated with a greater reduction in cardiovascular disease risk. Cardiovascular disease rates were 14% lower (95% CI: 5-23%) when moderate to vigorous physical activity represented 20% rather than 10% of total energy expenditure on physical activity, even in those with low levels of activity. . This is equivalent to turning a daily 14-minute walk into a brisk 7-minute walk.
In general, the lowest rates of cardiovascular disease were observed among UK Biobank participants who performed higher overall levels of physical activity and a higher proportion of moderate to vigorous physical activity. Interestingly, however, when the total volume of physical activity increased but the ratio of moderate to vigorous activity remained the same, the authors observed little effect on the rate of cardiovascular disease. For example, when total levels of physical activity were doubled, there was no significant effect on cardiovascular disease rates when the ratio of moderate to vigorous activity remained at 10%, but the rate of cardiovascular disease decreased by 23% and 40% when the ratio of moderate to vigorous activity Moderate to vigorous physical activity increased by 20% and 40%, respectively.
Professor Tom Yates, Professor of Physical Activity, Sedentary Behavior and Health at the University of Leicester, and senior author of the paper said: “Our analysis of data from the UK Biobank confirms that increasing the overall amount of physical activity can reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke, But we also found that achieving the same total amount of physical activity by increasing intensity Activity has a significant additional benefit.
“Our findings support simple behavior change messages that ‘every step counts’ to encourage people to increase their general physical activity, and if this can be done by incorporating moderately more intense activities. This may be as simple as turning a leisurely stroll into a brisk walk. , but a variety of methods should encourage individuals and help them find what is most practical or enjoyable for them.”
The amount and intensity of physical activity and the incidence of cardiovascular disease, European Heart Journal (2022). DOI: 10.1093/eurheartj/ehac613
Provided by University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust
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