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Am J Cardiol. 2012 Apr 1;109(7):988-93. doi: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2011.11.031. Epub 2012 Jan 3.

Cardiorespiratory fitness and metabolic risk.

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Department of Internal Medicine, Center for Human Nutrition, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Texas, USA.

Erratum in

  • Am J Cardiol. 2013 Jan 1;111(1):151.


The present study sought to evaluate the relation between cardiovascular risk factors and cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) in a large population. Low CRF has been associated with increased total mortality and cardiovascular mortality. The mechanisms underlying greater cardiovascular mortality have not yet been determined. A series of cardiovascular risk factors were measured in 59,820 men and 22,192 women who had undergone determinations of CRF with maximal exercise testing. The risk factor profiles were segregated into 5 quintiles of CRF. With decreasing CRF, increases occurred in obesity, triglycerides, non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, triglyceride/high-density lipoprotein ratios, blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and cigarette smoking. Self-reported physical activity declined with decreasing levels of CRF. In conclusion, it appears likely that the enrichment of cardiovascular risk factors, especially metabolic risk factors, account for a portion of the increased cardiovascular mortality in low-fitness subjects. The mechanisms responsible for this enrichment in subjects with a low CRF represent a challenge for future research.

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