Send to

Choose Destination
Am J Epidemiol. 2000 Feb 1;151(3):293-9.

Associations of light, moderate, and vigorous intensity physical activity with longevity. The Harvard Alumni Health Study.

Author information

Department of Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Physical activity is associated with better health; however, the optimal intensity of activity remains unclear. A total of 13,485 men (mean age, 57.5 years) from the Harvard Alumni Health Study reported their walking, stair climbing, and sports/recreation in 1977. Between 1977 and 1992, 2,539 died. After adjusting for the different activity components, distance walked and storeys climbed independently predicted longevity (p, trend = 0.004 and <0.001, respectively). Light activities (<4 multiples of resting metabolic rate (METs)) were not associated with reduced mortality rates, moderate activities (4-<6 METs) appeared somewhat beneficial, and vigorous activities (> or =6 METs) clearly predicted lower mortality rates (p, trend = 0.72, 0.07, and <0.001, respectively). These data provide some support for current recommendations that emphasize moderate intensity activity; they also clearly indicate a benefit of vigorous activity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Silverchair Information Systems
Loading ...
Support Center