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Heart Health Library


Risks of Physical Inactivity

What health risks are associated with physical inactivity?

Lack of physical activity has clearly been shown to be a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and other conditions:

  • Less active, less fit persons have a greater risk of developing high blood pressure.
  • Studies indicate that physically active people are less likely to develop coronary heart disease than those who are inactive--even after the researchers accounted for smoking, alcohol use, and diet.
  • Lack of physical activity can contribute to feelings of anxiety and depression.
  • Physical inactivity may increase the risk of certain cancers.
  • Physically active overweight or obese people significantly reduced their risk for disease with physical activity.

Facts about sedentary lifestyles

Thousands and thousands of deaths result each year due to a lack of regular physical activity. In addition:

  • Inactivity tends to increase with age.
  • Women are more likely to lead sedentary lifestyles than men.
  • Non-Hispanic white adults are more likely to engage in physical activity than Hispanic and non-Hispanic black adults.

Click here to view the
Online Resources of Cardiovascular Disease

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