heart-patient-walking
Exercise
Heart Health

A Short Way to Prolong Life

It’s not a marathon runner’s workout time, but doctors are advising heart patients to move around every twenty minutes in an effort to prolong life.

Previous research has shown that being sedentary for long periods may shorten life, and that heart patients spend most of their time sitting, lying down or watching TV. But, that research said, taking activity breaks could literally be a lifesaver.

The most recent study suggested that a heart patient should take a seven-minute break of light physical activity for every 20 minutes of being sedentary.

Even light activity can reduce the risk of premature death.

“Simple activities such as standing up and walking at a casual pace will expend more than 770 calories in a day if done with this frequency and duration,” said study author Dr Ailar Ramadi, of the University of Alberta, Canada. That number, he said, was associated with a lower risk of premature death.

The study enrolled 132 patients with coronary artery disease. The average age was 63, and 77% were male. Participants wore an armband activity monitor for an average of 22 hours a day for five days. The activity monitor recorded the amount of energy spent during breaks from inactivity, the amount of inactive time, and the number and duration of breaks during each sedentary hour.

The investigators used those numbers to reach their conclusions.

 

 

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