Walking faster or longer linked to significant cardiovascular benefits in older adults

November, 2015

A ten-year study involving 4,207 older adults (73+) demonstrates that even in this older age group, modest physical activity was associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease. Among both men and women in good health:

  • those who were more active had significantly lower risk of future heart attacks and stroke
  • those who walked faster than three miles per hour had a 50% lower risk than those who walked at a pace of less than two mph (50%, 53%, 50% lower risk of coronary heart disease, stroke and total CVD, respectively)
  • those who walked an average of seven blocks per day or more had a similar advantage compared to those who walked up to five blocks per week (36%, 54% and 47% lower risk of CHD, stroke and total CVD, respectively)
  • those who engaged in leisure activities such as lawn-mowing, raking, gardening, swimming, biking and hiking, also had a lower risk of CHD, stroke and total CVD, compared to those who did not engage in leisure-time activities

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2015-11/tuhs-wfo111915.php

Soares-Miranda, L., Siscovick, D. S., Psaty, B. M., Longstreth, W. T., & Mozaffarian, D. (2015). Physical Activity and Risk of Coronary Heart Disease and Stroke in Older Adults: The Cardiovascular Health Study. Circulation, CIRCULATIONAHA.115.018323. http://doi.org/10.1161/CIRCULATIONAHA.115.018323

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