the most important (yet most neglected) part of the human
anatomy is the heart, but cardiorespiratory fitness is a factor
in overall health. Reseachers conducted exercise tests over
a 16-year period, factoring in a subset of 2,478 participants
available to repeat the
exercise tests conducted at the outset of the study.
Men and women 18 to 30 years of age were administered a
maximal treadmill test (with increasing incline and speed
until the subject reached physical exhaustion), gauging their
overall health, and as late as 2001, given repeated tests
and checked for their health status. Adjustments were made
for age, race, sex, smoking, family history of diabetes, hypertension,
and myocardial infarction.
Results: Those shown to be of "low fitness" were between
three and six times more likely to develop diabetes, hypertension,
and the metabolic syndrome than those espousing a "high-fitness"
regimen. This study was performed in conjunction with another
study, "Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults",
sponsored by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute;
the subset repeating the exercise was a portion of a group
of 5,115 participants from Chicago, Minneapolis, Birmingham
Ultimately, the study results confirm what your parents and
doctors have told you: Your health habits today - good and
bad - will affect your lifestyle years down the road.
Carnethon MR, Gidding SS, Nehgme R, Sidney S, Jacobs DR,
Liu K. Cardiorespiratory fitness in young adulthood and the
development of cardiovascular disease factors. JAMA
December 17, 2003:290(23), pp 3092-3100.
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