Latest studies have revealed that it is not how much exercise you do but the fact that you do perform at least a little bit of exercise that reduces risk of heart ailments. Although the more you do, the better for your heart, it has been proven that even minor amounts of exercises can help in reduction of risks associated with heart attacks and strokes. The study was undertaken by a team of researchers belonging to the Harvard School of Public Health.
According to the study, in comparison to people who lead a completely inactive and sedentary lifestyle, those who perform exercises for 150 minutes per week reduce their risk of heart ailments by 14%. Similarly, those who exercise for 300 minutes a week reduce their risk of heart ailments by 20%.
The researchers of the study state that more exercise reduces risk further. In a word, risk of heart ailments and the duration of exercise are conversely related. These results are based on considering moderate intensity exercises that include leisure activities.
As per the recommendations of US authorities, working out for less than two and a half hours per week also reduces the risk of heart ailments in comparison to those who do not indulge in any form of exercise. According to Jacob Sattelmair, ScD, the study is in sync with the health guidelines provided by the federal authorities. While working out for 150 minutes does offer reduction in risks related to heart diseases, doubling the workout time almost doubles the benefits received. Although a number of studies have been conducted on the same lines, this study has been deemed different because it evaluates the magnitude of advantages gained for a specified duration of exercises. The assessment of benefits is quantitative, Sattelmair said.
For the study, more than three thousand heart diseases and physical activity studies were considered. For the main study, thirty three studies were short listed. Quantitative measurement of risk reduction was possible for nine studies. Authors elucidated on the fact that previous studies divided people into two broad categories – sedentary and active. However, no measurement was made regarding the affect of certain quantity of exercises on reduction of risks related to heart ailments.
The study also brought to light that the results were found to be more profound in women than in men. The study concluded that even a small quantity of physical activity can make a difference to heart health and more exercising will increase benefits gained.