LOS ANGELES, Nov. 12 (Xinhua) -- More physical activity and at higher intensities could lead to a big drop in the risk of death in older women from any cause, according to a new research published this week in the American Heart Association's journal Circulation.
This research, conducted from 2011 to 2015, is among the first to investigate physical activity, measured using a wearable device called a triaxial accelerometer, and a clinical outcome.
"We used devices to better measure not only higher intensity physical activities, but also lower intensity activities and sedentary behavior, which has become of great interest in the last few years," the study's first author I-Min Lee, professor of medicine and epidemiology at Harvard University's medical and public health schools in Boston, Massachusetts, was quoted as saying in a news release.
More than 17,700 women, average age 72, who were asked to wear the device for seven days, when awake, returned their devices. The device is capable of measuring activity along three planes: up and down, front to back and side to side. These capabilities increase sensitivity to detect physical activity and allow for more precise measurements.
Researchers analyzed data from 16,741 compliant participants, whose devices showed it was worn for at least 10 hours a day, on at least four days.
They found more moderate to vigorous intensity physical activity, such as brisk walking, was associated with roughly a 60 percent to 70 percent lower risk of death at the end of the study among the most active women, compared to the least active, according to the study, which is funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health.
The findings support American Heart Association that suggest at least 150 minutes a week of moderate intensity or 75 minutes a week of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, or a combination of the two, and muscle-strengthening exercises two or more days a week.