Tip #10: Even 30 min/wk of leisure time exercise reduces heart attack risk

Me taking a vigorous walk before giving a lecture

Me taking a vigorous walk before giving a lecture

Exercise is a mood enhancer.  It promotes better cardiovascular health.  I just FEEL so much better since starting regular exercise 4 years ago.

But when I was a medical intern almost 30 years ago, I bought my first car and promptly gained 30 lbs.  No longer was I walking 3 miles roundtrip every day to the hospital.  I wasn’t lugging a duffel bag full of dirty clothes to the laundromat.

So it hardly surprises me that a new study shows that things that predict sedentary behaviors (couch potato-itis) increase BMI, diabetes, and elevates the likelihood of having a heart attack.  Chief amongst these couch potato cuplrits were having a car and having a TV (study was done in rich and poor countries around the world).  The study’s authors note:

“These data extend the importance of physical activity and confirm a consistent protective effect of physical activity across all country income levels in addition to the known benefits of modifying traditional risk factors such as smoking. Furthermore, ownership of a car and TV, which promotes sedentary behaviour, was found to be independently associated with the risk of heart attacks.”

This amazing video talks more about the benefits of exercise?  Can you commit to even starting to walk for 30 min, once a week???

Dr John Ellis MD

Board-certified anesthesiologist, with expertise in cardiovascular anesthesia and the implications of obesity and sleep apnea in anesthesia. See vascularanesthesia.com for professional information. Dr. Ellis has used the strategies in here to: (1) lose 120 lbs over 18 months, (2) stop all antihypertensive medicines, and (3) no longer need CPAP treatment for sleep apnea.

One Comment:

  1. I’m glad to see you continuing to preach the sensible gospel. Since I began to work out 3-4 times per week (about an hour per workout, more or less), I have lost weight, gained muscle tone and feel much more positive about life (and this in an election year!)

    To contrast with your good advice, I just read a little blurb in “Parade” magazine, in “Doctor” Oz’s column…”don’t have time to exercise? Try my 7-minute workout!”

    Really??? It takes me 8 minutes to get warmed up, to get my heart rate out of the resting zone and into cardio space. Why would a so-called Doctor try to convince the (gullible) public that a 7-minute workout is all you need? That is simply irresponsible!

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