A recent study has shown that people who are physically fit are less likely to develop heart disease, and are less likely to die from any cause, as measured by a high level of cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF).
The researchers say that it is rare for doctors to consider cardiorespiratory fitness in evaluating a person’s risk of future heart disease or death. This is mostly because the degree of risk reduction associated with different levels of physical fitness had been unclear. The studies show that people with a low level of cardiorespiratory fitness have a 70% higher risk of death from any cause compared with those with a high level of fitness.
“We suggest that CRF, which can be readily assessed by an exercise stress test, could be useful for prediction of [heart disease] and all-cause mortality risk in a primary care medical practice,” write researcher Satoru Kodama, MD, PhD, of the University of Tsukuba Institute of Clinical Medicine in Ibaraki, Japan, and colleagues in the Journal of the American Medical Association.