What amount of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity impacts mortality in adults 60 and older, and is it different than the recommended guidelines?
A lower dose than the recommended 150+ minutes per week of moderate-to-vigorous exercise reduced mortality in older adults compared to their inactive counterparts.
- 9 of 835 studies qualified for analysis
- Study quality assessed by two reliable methods; studies only included if criteria met in both
- Follow-up period of at least 3 years required
- Exercise measured in MET-minutes, which is the amount of energy expenditure for the exercise per minute
- “Doses” of exercise based on intensity, duration and frequency – divided into low, medium and high doses
- Recommendation is 500-1000 MET-minutes per week (about 150 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous exercise)
Compared to an inactive population, 60 and older:
- 22% lower mortality risk in the low dose moderate-to-vigorous activity group
- 28% lower mortality risk in the medium dose moderate-to-vigorous activity group
- 35% lower mortality risk in the high dose moderate-to-vigorous activity group
- Greatest benefit seen in those who do little or no activity and increase
- Much of the data analyzed came from two large studies, so there is some bias towards those populations and study methods
- There isn’t guidance as to the minimum amount of activity required in the low dose group in the analysis in the range of 1-499 MET-minutes