Which Better Predicts The Risk Of Death: Age Or Resistance To Exercise?

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Which Better Predicts The Risk Of Death: Age Or Resistance To Exercise?
Which Better Predicts The Risk Of Death: Age Or Resistance To Exercise?

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Which better predicts the risk of death: age or resistance to exercise?

Physiological age more accurately shows how long we have left to live than chronological age, new research suggests. It is important not how old you are, but how old you feel.

Which better predicts the risk of death: age or resistance to exercise?
Which better predicts the risk of death: age or resistance to exercise?

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Physiological age more accurately shows how long we have left to live than chronological age, new research suggests. It is important not how old you are, but how old you feel. Research paper published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, the journal of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).

“Age is one of the most reliable indicators of the risk of death: the older you are, the higher your risk of dying. But we have found that physiological health is even the best indicator. If you want to live longer, exercise more. This should improve your health and increase your life expectancy,”said study author Dr. Serge Harb, a cardiologist at the American Cleveland Clinic.

Based on the results of the exercise test, the researchers developed a formula to calculate "physiological age", which they call A-BEST (Age Based on Exercise Test). The formula takes into account the magnitude of the load, the reaction of the heart to it and the restoration of the heart rate after training.

“Information about physiological age is a good motivation for increasing physical activity, which can lead to an increase in life expectancy. If we say to 45-year-olds that their physiological age is 55, then this should be an alarming signal for them. On the other hand, a 65-year-old with a physiological age of 50 is likely to live longer than his peers,”said Dr. Harb.

The study involved 126,356 patients who, between 1991 and 2015, went to the Cleveland Clinic for their first exercise test as part of a general examination to diagnose heart problems. The test involves walking on an accelerating treadmill. During the test, exercise volume, heart rate and subsequent recovery are usually measured. The data were used to calculate A-BEST scores based on gender and use of drugs that affect heart rate.

The average age of the study participants was 53.5 years, 59% of them were men. According to the data obtained on the basis of A-BEST, more than half of the patients aged 50–60 years (55% of men and 57% of women) were physiologically younger than their chronological age. After a follow-up period (mean 8.7 years), 9,929 (8%) participants died. As expected, certain measures of the A-BEST formula were associated with mortality.

The deceased patients were, on average, ten years older than the rest. But A-BEST appeared to predict mortality significantly better than chronological age, even after adjusting for gender, smoking, body mass index, statins, diabetes, hypertension, coronary artery disease, and end-stage renal disease.

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