Dr. Blair in a BJM article from Jan 2009 reported a fact those of us on the pro-activity side of the equation have long suspected. Low cardio-respiratory fitness based on a maximal treadmill test is more predictive concerning chances of death compared to obesity, smoking, type 2 diabetes and hypertension COMBINED. Obese men with high cardio-respiratory fitness had HALF the chances of preventable death of normal weight aged matched persons with low cardio-respiratory fitness. BMI and cardio-respiratory fitness are showing stronger correlations with predicting early death than other lifestyle factors.
It turns out that the number one factor concerning general health is doing 30 minutes, five days a week of moderate aerobic activity. That’s it. Obesity, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, cholesterol and smoking are secondary by comparison. One would hypothesize that the epigenetic changes that occur peri and post activity help mediate these other lifestyle issues. The take away is now we have real, measurable, long-term data showing that exercise trumps everything else. Clients feeling lazy, not motivated to hit the gym during the holidays- exercise trumps everything.