FRIDAY, Dec. 10, 2021 (HealthDay News) — Higher levels of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) may help reduce the risk for major adverse cardiovascular events and all-cause mortality, especially among individuals with cardiovascular disease (CVD), according to a study published online Dec. 2 in PLOS Medicine.

Esmée A. Bakker, Ph.D., from Radboud University Medical Center in the Netherlands, and colleagues compared the relationship between MVPA and incident major adverse cardiovascular events (MACE) and mortality among healthy individuals, individuals with elevated levels of cardiovascular risk factors (CVRF), and individuals with CVD. The analysis included 142,493 participants in the Lifelines Cohort Study in the Netherlands who were followed for a median of 6.8 years.

The researchers found no linear association between MVPA and all-cause mortality or MACE among healthy individuals or individuals with CVRF, but there was a linear association for individuals with CVD. Compared with inactive individuals, MVPA in healthy individuals was protective (adjusted hazard ratios [95 percent confidence intervals] for MVPA quartiles 1 [lowest MVPA] to 4 [highest]: 0.81 [0.64 to 1.02], 0.71 [0.56 to 0.89], 0.72 [0.57 to 0.91], and 0.76 [0.60 to 0.96], respectively). Among participants with CVRF, corresponding adjusted hazard ratios (95 percent confidence intervals) were 0.69 (0.57 to 0.82), 0.66 (0.55 to 0.80), 0.64 (0.53 to 0.77), and 0.69 (0.57 to 0.84), also compared with inactive individuals. For CVD patients, adjusted hazard ratios (95 percent confidence intervals) were 0.80 (0.62 to 1.03), 0.82 (0.63 to 1.06), 0.74 (0.57 to 0.95), and 0.70 (0.53 to 0.93), respectively. Leisure MVPA had the most health benefits, and occupational MVPA had no health benefits.

“Individuals with CVDs should be encouraged that ‘more is better’ regarding MVPA,” the authors write. “These findings may help to optimize exercise prescription to gain maximal benefits of a physically active lifestyle.”

One author disclosed being a member of the study executive committee for the Esperion Pharmaceuticals CLEAR OUTCOMES study.

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