Cardio Fitness – The More, The Better

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A new research study[1] shows that higher physical activity is associated with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease.

Being physically active is beneficial for you, especially in preventing diseases like heart attacks and strokes. According to the new study headed by the University of Oxford, indulging yourself in regular physical exercise or getting more activity may even be more profitable for the prevention of cardiovascular disease.

But, it also showed that the people with the highest level of activity reaped the greatest benefits.

More is better.

The technique of breaking up exercise into short "snacks" instead of long workouts is known as Exercise snacks. It has been shown to lead to measurable increases in cardio fitness - even when done infrequently.
Some cardio is good – but more is even better – so says a recent research study.

What was the Goal of the Research Study?

The study’s goal was to prove that higher levels of physical activity can lower the risk of cardiovascular disease. There was skepticism about the previous methods validated in relatively small studies because self-reported questionnaires are subject to differential measurement error. This time, researchers use an accelerometer (a small, lightweight motion sensor) that can reliably measure physical activity status and, therefore, could enhance the perception of associations with cardiovascular disease.

Jogging is excellent cardiovascular exercise.
Jogging is excellent cardiovascular exercise.

What were the Research Methods of the Study?

Researchers in the United Kingdom obtained 90,211 individuals to carry an accelerometer on their wrist for seven days between 2013 and 2015 to measure their physical activity. The researchers monitored the participants’ health for an average of five years.

There were 3,617 cases of cardiovascular disease observed in the participants included in the wider UK Biobank study of people between 40 and 69 years of age. Cases of cardiovascular disease were reduced among the participants as they increase the amount of moderate and vigorous physical activity. There was no threshold where the results of exercise ceased enhancing cardiovascular health, the study discovered. Those who were most active in the top 25% had an average decrease in risk of between 48% and 57%.

What were the Results and Conclusions of the Findings?

Although those who were more active were also more possible not to smoke, drink less alcohol, and have healthy body weight, the researchers said they considered these factors in their study and discovered that the connection between extended exercise and a drop in cardiovascular disease was still powerful.

The findings imply that physical activity is not only linked with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, but the biggest benefit is observed from those who are active at the highest level.

woman preparing to exercise
Cardio exercise – the more, the better

Recommendations for Fitness Trainees Based on the Research

The UN agency now suggests that adults get at least 150 minutes (2.5 hours) of moderate to strenuous physical activity weekly. Physical activity especially when done regularly will not only lower the risk of cardiovascular disease but will also help your brain health and memory, improves mood, promotes better sleep, and many other benefits.


1. “Accelerometer measured physical activity and the incidence of cardiovascular disease: Evidence from the UK Biobank cohort study”