Features October 2011 Issue

Stay Active and Protect Yourself Against PAD and CHD

Recent studies show a strong association between physical activity and risks of peripheral artery disease and coronary heart disease.

You hear the message all the time that you should get more exercise. Your doctor tells you, and so do your relatives, the American Heart Association and the local health clubs that are after your business. You know that, in general, more exercise seems like a good idea. But how specifically does it benefit heart health? Two recent studies have found strong evidence that regular physical activity, even if itís just frequent long walks, can help lower your risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) and peripheral artery disease (PAD). CHD is a narrowing of the small blood vessels that supply blood to the heart, while PAD is a narrowing of the arteries in your extremities, usually the legs.

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