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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 6  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 109-114

Exercise for prevention of cardiovascular disease: Evidence-based recommendations

1 Department of Cardiology, Mother Hospital, Thrissur, Kerala, India
2 Department of Cardiology, Christian Medical College, Vellore, Tamil Nadu, India

Correspondence Address:
Geevar Zachariah
Chief of Cardiology and Chairman Mother Heart Care, Mother Hospital, Pantheon, Remadevi Mandir Lane, Punkunnam, Thrissur - 680 002, Kerala
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/JCPC.JCPC_9_17

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Sedentary lifestyle is one of the major risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD). In India, a large percentage of the people are physically inactive with fewer than 10% engaging in recreational physical activity. Physical activity has many beneficial effects on the risk factors for CVD. Apart from improving fitness level, it decreases myocardial oxygen demand and improves myocardial perfusion. There is an inverse association between physical activity and all-cause mortality. In primary prevention, physical inactivity is associated with a two-fold increase in the risk for coronary events. In secondary prevention, data confirm the existence of an inverse dose–response relationship between cardiovascular fitness and the all-cause mortality in large populations of cardiovascular patients. Guidelines from the American authorities as well as the European Society of Cardiology provide specific recommendations for exercise depending on the clinical setting (primary or secondary prevention of CVD) and the patient-specific factors (the patient's physical activity level and the perceived CVD risk). The present review summarizes the clinical evidence regarding the role of exercise in CVD prevention and the exercise recommendations from the leading Cardiac societies.

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