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Research Article Open Access
Abstract Aim: This cross-sectional study was aimed at evaluating the association between physical activity (PA), overweight and CV risk in a large sample of Italian general practice patients and forecast the impact of increasing PA in a general population. Methods: Regression analysis on single CV risk factors and stratification of global risk score have been carried out on 45,862 records with normal/overweight and active/inactive conditions as primary explanatory variables. Moreover a hypothetical attributable risk was calculated on the basis of expected cases. Results: HDL cholesterol resulted the risk factor most correlated with PA. Systolic blood pressure and fasting plasma glucose levels seemed to be more correlated to overweight than to PA. Active women and men would respectively have a 15% and 17% lower probability of experiencing a major cardiovascular event in the subsequent ten years than their inactive counterparts, adjusting for overweight. If inactive subjects became active at the lowest level, 818.8 cases/100,000 men and 201.5 cases/100,000 women aged 35-69 years would be protected during the same period. Conclusion: As counsellors for active lifestyle, general practitioners could contribute in reducing the absolute number of CV major events in the ‘healthy’ general population.
CVD risk, Physical activity, General practice, CVD risk, Physical activity, General practice