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cardiovascular health

Study Finds Sweet Spot In Amount Of Weekly Exercise



A long term study conducted on over 100,000 patients found just how much people should be working out in order to increase their lives. The answer is likely more than you originally thought.

The study found that people who followed the US Department of Health and Human Services’ recommendation of working out between 150 – 300 per week had 20-21% of lower mortality risk. It also found that people who performed twice or four times more than that number had even more health benefits, suggesting that you can’t really work out too much.

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The study was published in the journal Circulation with the aim of figuring out if “prolonged, vigorous or moderate intensity physical activity above the recommended levels” provided more benefits or if it had the potential to harm people. In order to see these results, researchers collected data of over 30 years of participants’ lives, acquiring a full picture of their lifestyles, activity levels and mortality rates.

Researchers gathered all available data on patients, including their BMIs, ages, medical history, diagnosed illnesses, and more. Participants also reported their personal habits and submitted exercise data.

The study found that adults who performed double the recommended range of workouts each week had the lowest risk of mortality, particularly in regards to cardiovascular diseases. There were no negative side effects associated with working out more than what’s recommended by the US Department of Health and Human Services.

“This finding may reduce the concerns around the potential harmful effect of engaging in high levels of physical activity observed in several previous studies,” said Dong Hoon Lee, Sc.D., M.S., research associate at Harvard.

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Still, researchers don’t want people to overdo it in terms of exercise, taking this evidence and immediately linking longer workouts with a longer life, even though it is what it implies. They make it clear that sticking to the recommended minutes of workouts per week is sufficient for a healthy life, preventing diseases and taking care of your cardiovascular system.

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cardiovascular health

Strokes And High Blood Pressure Linked With This Everyday Activity




A large new study has found a link between a variety of cardiovascular conditions and napping, puzzling a lot of people. Isn’t more sleep generally linked with healthier life?

The study is large and has prompted researchers to question about the nature of sleep, primarily, the time in which it takes place, something that has proved to be very important over the course of a person’s life.

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Published in the journal Hypertension, the study had data from over 360,000 participants collected from UK Biobank between the years 2006 and 2010. These participants provided blood, urine, and saliva samples, while also answering a variety of questions about their sleep habits.

Researchers found that participants who napped during the day were 12% more likely to have high blood pressure and that they were 24% more likely to experience a stroke when compared to people who have never napped. Results were even worse with nappers over the age of 60, who were 20% more likely to develop high blood pressure when compared to those who didn’t nap.

While it would be easy to connect naps with poor cardiovascular health, researchers theorize that these results reflect a lack of sleep during the night.

“This may be because, although taking a nap itself is not harmful, many people who take naps may do so because of poor sleep at night. Poor sleep at night is associated with poorer health, and naps are not enough to make up for that,” said clinical psychologist Michael Grandner in a statement.

Researchers explain that beneficial power naps, between 12 to 20 minutes, are the most effective. A longer nap is discouraged since it’ll likely affect your sleep time during the evening and isn’t really considered a nap by sleep experts.

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Apart from the surprise factor, these results are important since they highlight many questions that health experts should ask when meeting patients for their routine checkups, opening up risk factors and spaces for vulnerabilities.

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Doing This Can Triple Your Odds Of Heart Disease




Heart health is impacted by most things you do. Your eating habits, how much you sleep and your level of activity are key factors that will have a hand in shaping your cardiovascular health. And now, a new study shows that poor sleep can increase your odds of heart disease by a significant margin.

The study, published in the journal Scientific Reports and conducted by researchers from the University of South Florida, reviewed sleep data of over 6,000 adults with a median age of 53. These subjects provided reports on their sleep habits and cardiovascular history. A group of around 600 people wore a device on their wrist that captured their rhythms more precisely.

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Researchers explained they selected subjects that were primarily middle-aged since this subgroup tends to have more stressful life experiences. Participants were asked different questions about their health, whether they had any heart conditions, and whether there was cardiovascular disease in their family history. They were also asked about smoking practices, physical activity, depression, and other matters that could affect their heart health.

Researchers measured a variety of factors related to sleep, like satisfaction, regularity, and more. They found that the more issues a person had, the likelier it was for them to experience adverse heart health side effects. Subjects who wore sleep monitors and reported sleep problems showed a 141%of increase in heart disease probability, tripling their odds of heart disease.

“These findings show the importance of assessing ‘co-existing sleep health problems’ within an individual to capture the risk of heart disease,” said lead author Soomi Lee. “This is one of the first studies showing that, among well-functioning adults in midlife, having more sleep health problems may increase the risk of heart disease.”

“The higher estimated risk in those who provided both self-report and actigraphy sleep data suggests that measuring sleep health accurately and comprehensively is important to increase the prediction of heart disease,” he continued.

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Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, affecting over 30 million people in the year 2018. Studies like this one can provide new parameters for the treatment and prevention of the disease, especially since sleep is a factor that can be regulated and improved upon.

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