Tuesday June 25, 2019

Physical Activity in Early Childhood Affects Future Cardiovascular Health: Study

For the study, more than 400 children between the ages of three and five years were involved

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physical activity
The researchers calculated cardiovascular fitness by measuring how long the children could last on a treadmill test and how fast their heart rates recovered after exercise. Pixabay

Physical activity in early childhood may have an impact on cardiovascular health later in life, according to a study. Published in the journal Pediatrics, the study found that physical activity in toddlers as young as three years old benefits blood vessel health, cardiovascular fitness and is key to the prevention of early risk indicators that can lead to adult heart disease.

“Many of us tend to think cardiovascular disease hits in older age, but arteries begin to stiffen when we are very young,” said study lead author Nicole Proudfoot from McMaster University in Canada.

“It’s important to start any kind of preventative measures early. We need to ensure that small children have many opportunities to be active to keep their hearts and blood vessels as healthy as possible,” Proudfoot said.

Physical activity
“Many of us tend to think cardiovascular disease hits in older age, but arteries begin to stiffen when we are very young,” said study lead author Nicole Proudfoot from McMaster University in Canada. Pixabay

For the study, more than 400 children between the ages of three and five years were involved. Over the course of three years, the researchers measured and analysed key markers of heart health: cardiovascular fitness, arterial stiffness and blood pressure.

The researchers calculated cardiovascular fitness by measuring how long the children could last on a treadmill test and how fast their heart rates recovered after exercise. They measured arterial stiffness by how fast their pulse travelled through their body and used ultrasound images to measure the stiffness of the carotid artery. They also measured blood pressure.

physical activity
The researchers determined that while arteries stiffen over time, the process is slower in young children who have been more active. Pixabay

ALSO READ: Physical Activities Powers Kids to Fight Emotional Distress: Study

The research team tracked physical activity each year by having the children wear an accelerometer around their waist for one week, allowing researchers to determine the amount and intensity of their activity each day. The researchers determined that while arteries stiffen over time, the process is slower in young children who have been more active.

Those kids also showed more endurance on the treadmill, suggesting they had better cardiovascular fitness and their heart rates came down faster after exercise. While the study showed overall physical activity had favourable effects on cardiovascular health, more intense physical activity was more beneficial. (IANS)

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Light Physical Activity May Lower CVD Risk in Women: Study

Most people do not think of folding clothes or walking to the mailbox as physical activity of any kind

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Mental Health
Cycling, walking in nature may improve your mental health. Pixabay

While strolling or running are beneficial for heart health, light physical activity, such as gardening and folding clothes, may also lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases (CVD) in older women, say researchers.

The study showed that such activities might be enough to significantly reduce stroke or heart failure by up to 22 per cent and the risk of heart attack or coronary death by as much as 42 per cent.

The association was strong across all racial and ethnic groups, noted the study published in the journal JAMA Network Open.

“The higher the amount of activity, the lower the risk,” said co-author Andrea LaCroix, Researcher at the University of California, San Diego.

Walking
Walk your way to good health.

“And the risk reduction showed regardless of the women’s overall health status, functional ability or even age. In other words, the association with light physical activity was apparent regardless of these other factors,” LaCroix added.

For the study, researchers studied nearly 6,000 women aged 63 to 97. They were made to wear a device which measured their movement 24 hours a day for seven consecutive days. The device was also calibrated by age to distinguish between light, and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity.

Also Read- Vitamin B in Pregnancy Prevents Brain Ailments in Baby

Most people do not think of folding clothes or walking to the mailbox as physical activity of any kind, the researchers said.

“This study suggests that for older women, any and all movement counts towards better cardiovascular health,” said David Goff, Director at National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) in the US. (IANS)