Strength Training Improves Heart Functions

by Mohamed Fathima S on  November 17, 2018 at 5:56 PM Heart Disease News
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Even though physical activity is known to improve the heart functions, neither research nor recommendations have been documented till date to differentiate which type of exercises are good for the heart. Static activities such as strength training are more strongly associated with the significant reduction of heart diseases than dynamic activities such as walking and cycling, reveals a new research presented at the ACC Latin America Conference 2018 in Lima, Peru.
Strength Training Improves Heart Functions
Strength Training Improves Heart Functions

"Both strength training and aerobic activity appeared to be heart healthy, even in small amounts, at the population level," said Maia P. Smith, PhD, MS, statistical epidemiologist and assistant professor in the Department of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at St. George's University in St. George's, Grenada. "Clinicians should counsel patients to exercise regardless--both activity types were beneficial. However, static activity appeared more beneficial than dynamic, and patients who did both types of physical activity fared better than patients who simply increased the level of one type of activity."

Researchers analyzed cardiovascular risk factors, such as high blood pressure, overweight, diabetes and high cholesterol, as a function of self-reported static and/or dynamic activity (strength training or walking/biking) in 4,086 American adults using data from the 2005-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. The researchers then adjusted for age, ethnicity, gender and smoking and stratified by age: 21 to 44 years old or over 45 years old.

In total, 36 percent of younger and 25 percent of older adults engaged in static activity, and 28 percent of younger and 21 percent of older adults engaged in dynamic activity. Researchers found engaging in either type of activity was associated with 30 to 70 percent lower rates of cardiovascular disease risk factors, but associations were strongest for static activity and in youth.

"One interesting takeaway was that both static and dynamic activity were almost as popular in older people as younger," Smith said. "I believe this gives clinicians the opportunity to counsel their older patients that they will fit into the gym or the road race just fine. The important thing is to make sure they are engaging in physical activity."

Smith said future research and data collection should use definitions of physical activity that separate static from dynamic activity to further investigate independent effects.



Source: Eurekalert

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