Daily activities

Daily activities reduce risk of heart disease in older women

Seniors, running or brisk walking isn’t the only way to reduce the risk of heart disease. Simply being “active” by performing routine activities, called movements of daily living, including housework, gardening, cooking, and personal care activities like showering, can significantly benefit your health. cardiovascular health.

Compared to women who move less than two hours a day in daily life, women who move at least four hours in daily life have a 43% lower risk of cardiovascular disease, a 43% lower risk of coronary heart disease, a 30% lower coronary heart disease. stroke and, in particular, a risk of death from cardiovascular disease reduced by 62%.

Report in the February 22, 2022 online edition of Journal of the American Heart Associationa multi-institutional team led by researchers from the Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Science at the University of California, San Diego studied the impact of daily movements on the risk of cardiovascular disease.

“The study demonstrates that all movements matter for disease prevention,” said first author Steve Nguyen, Ph.D., MPH, postdoctoral researcher at the Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health. “Spending more time in the movements of daily living, which includes a wide range of activities that we all do while standing and out of our chairs, has resulted in a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease.”

The researchers used a machine learning algorithm to categorize each minute spent awake into one of five behaviors: sitting, sitting in a vehicle, standing still, daily motion, walking, or running. Movements of daily living include activities that occur when you stand and walk around a room or patio, such as getting dressed, preparing meals, or gardening.

As part of the Women’s Health Initiative Objective Physical Activity and Cardiovascular Health study, researchers measured the physical activity of nearly 5,416 American women, ages 63 to 97, who did not have heart disease at onset. of the study.

Participants wore a research-grade accelerometer for up to seven days to get accurate measurements of the time they spent moving and, importantly, common types of behaviors in daily life that drive movement and aren’t often included in previous light and moderate movement studies. -to vigorous-intensity physical activity. These earlier studies typically focused on the intensity and duration of activities such as running and brisk walking, while the current study measured smaller movements at varying intensity during activities such as cooking.

Cardiovascular disease continues to be the leading cause of death for both women and men in the United States, with the highest rates among adults age 65 or older.

In this study, 616 women were diagnosed with cardiovascular disease, 268 with coronary heart disease, 253 had a stroke, and 331 died of cardiovascular disease.

“Much of the movement done by older adults is associated with daily living tasks, but this may not be considered physical activity. Understanding the benefits of daily living movements and adding them to physical activity guidelines can encourage more movement,” said lead author Andrea. LaCroix, Ph.D., MPH, professor emeritus and head of the Division of Epidemiology at the Herbert Wertheim School of Public Health.

Co-authors include: John Bellettiere and Loki Natarajan, UC San Diego; Guangxing Wang and Chongzhi Di, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center; and Michael J. LaMonte, University at Buffalo — SUNY.

This research was funded, in part, by the National Institute on Aging (P01 AG052352, 5T32AG058529-03) and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (R01 HL105065). The Women’s Health Initiative was funded by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (75N92021-D00001, 75N92021D00002, 75N92021D00003, 75N92021D00004, 75N92021D00005).