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Atherosclerosis. 2010 Apr;209(2):524-7. doi: 10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2009.09.018. Epub 2009 Sep 16.

Reductions in incident coronary heart disease risk above guideline physical activity levels in men.

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Life Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Donner Laboratory, 1 Cyclotron Road, Berkeley, CA 94720, United States. ptwilliams@lbl.go



One-half of Americans currently meet guideline physical activity levels. For these individuals, exceeding guideline levels may provide additional health benefits.


Incident physician-diagnosed myocardial infarction and angina, revascularization procedures (CABG, PTCA), and ischemic heart disease deaths during 7.7-year follow-up were compared to baseline usual distance run in 35,402 male runners.


Men reported 467 incident CHD and the National Death Index identified an additional 54 ischemic heart disease deaths. Per km/day run, the men's risks declined 5% for fatal and nonfatal CHD (P=0.001), nonfatal CHD (P=0.0008), and revascularization procedures (P=0.002). Their risks for nonfatal myocardial infarctions and angina declined 7% (P=0.02) and 10% (P=0.003), respectively. Compared to <3km/day run (upper limit guideline level), >9km/day run produced risks 65% lower for angina (P=0.008), 29% lower for nonfatal CHD (P=0.04), and 26% lower for fatal and nonfatal CHD (P=0.06).


Exceeding guideline physical activity levels produce important CHD-risk reductions.

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