Researchers who reviewed the results from 12 studies conducted in the US and Europe, which followed the lifestyles of 370,000 people over an average of 15 years, have concluded that when it comes to heart failure, the more exercise the better.
How much more? Maybe as much as 300 to 600 minutes of moderate physical activity per week, or over an hour of modest exercise each day; and, the benefit – 20 to 35 percent lower risk of heart failure.
While overall the more people exercised, the lower their risk of heart failure, the current recommended rate of 30 minutes of moderate physical activity per day was clearly not enough.
The researchers say that future physical activity guidelines should take their findings into consideration, and potentially provide stronger recommendations regarding the value of higher amounts of physical activity for the prevention of heart failure.
Doctors in the US point out that although over the last 30 years there has been tremendous success in reducing heart disease among the general public, heart failure rates have not declined enough. The findings from the new study suggest that higher levels of physical activity may help combat this growing burden of heart failure.
In heart failure, the heart cannot supply adequate amounts of blood to the rest of body, resulting in shortness of breath and reduced ability to exercise, the researchers explained.