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Coronary Artery Disease: What Every Fitness Professional Needs to Know

Developing a thorough understanding of coronary artery disease (CAD) can help fitness professionals fight one of the world’s deadliest diseases. ?

How deadly? For starters, CAD is the leading cause of death around the world, accounting for 13.2% of all deaths in 2012 (WHO 2014a). It kills almost 380,000 Americans every year (CDC 2014a). Exercise professionals can do something about these statistics by designing fitness programs that reduce CAD risk factors in clients while improving their quality of life. ?

Asian Americans Face Significant Health Risk

It may be time to focus health promotion efforts toward Asian Americans. Research from the Journal of the American College of Cardiology (2014; 64 [23], 2486–94) says that this population has a significantly high risk of dying from heart disease or stroke.

Using U.S. census data and death records, researchers examined death rates among the largest Asian subgroups (Asian-Indian, Chinese, Filipino, Japanese, Korean and Vietnamese). They then narrowed their search to deaths caused by heart disease and stroke. Overall, the researchers combed 10,442,034 death records.

Mind-Body Therapies and Cardiovascular Disease

Mind-body therapies and biology-based therapies are the treatment modalities most commonly used among patients with heart disease who turn to complementary and alternative medicine, according to a report in Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine (2013; doi: 10.1155/2013/672097). Researchers based this conclusion on an analysis of a variety of studies and surveys, including the American 2007 National Health Interview Survey and international surveys conducted through 2010.

Walking Helps Women, Not Men, Avoid Stroke

In last month’s issue, it was reported that only a small portion of the population walks for extended periods on a regular basis. According to researchers from Spain, women should take up the activity to reduce stroke potential.

Lift Weights, Avoid Metabolic Syndrome

Weight training has many benefits. Warding off metabolic syndrome may be one of them, suggests a recent study.

Part of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, the study set out to determine (1) how many adults lift weights regularly and (2) the impact of weight training on the prevalence and risk of metabolic syndrome. The findings, reported in the Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research (2012; 26 [11], 3113–17), included data on 5,618 adults aged 20 and older from 1999–2004. Here are some takeaways:

Thriving After a Stroke

Client: RayPersonal trainer: Julie Lombardo, owner, Sweet Success Personal TrainingLocation: Chino Hills, California

Making the switch. In 2005, now 80-year-old Ray suffered a hemorrhagic stroke that resulted in numbness on the left side of his body. Interested in improving function and fitness, he sought the guidance of physical therapists. Eventually, he was forced to give up treatment because his insurance coverage had reached its maximum.

Focus on Function

Client: George | Personal Trainer: Valentin, owner, Pilates Body by Valentin | Location: Dublin, CA

Weighty issues. George first began working with Valentin in 2006. “He came to me when he was at his maximum weight,” she recalls. “He was waddling around with a pair of bad knees and needed to get the strength to do activities of daily living.”

“Extreme” Exercise Hurts Hearts

In the July–August issue of IDEA Fitness Journal, we reported on a study that found participation in endurance activities like marathons was not harmful to health. A new study suggests the opposite may be true.

Canadian Metabolic Syndrome Rates

According to a recent report in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (2011; 183 [15], E1127–34), 1 in 5 Canadians suffers from metabolic syndrome, a collection of risk factors associated with heart disease, stroke and other similar conditions. The wide-ranging study surveyed 1,800 Canadians, a cross-sectional sample representing 96% of the population aged 6–79. The study did not include people living in institutions, on reservations or in remote areas, or full-time members of the armed forces.

3 Hours of Exercise Per Week Cuts Men’s Heart Health Risk

Various research organizations suggest specific amounts of weekly physical activity for losing and managing weight and improving health. A study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise (2011; 43 [10], 1884–90) says that men who do at least 3 hours of vigorous-intensity exercise per week can reduce myocardial infarction (MI) risk by as much as 22%.

Half of All Women to Die From Heart Disease

According to the 2011 10Q Report: Advancing Women’s Heart Health Through Improved Research, Diagnosis and Treatment, heart disease causes an estimated 8.6 million deaths among American women annually and is the leading cause of death for women in the United States. Nearly 50% of women are expected to die from heart disease or stroke.

Long-Term Endurance Training Linked to Heart Damage

Endurance training is thought to contribute to improved heart health. However, a recent study suggests that too much training may have the opposite effect. Published online ahead of print in the Journal of Applied Physiology (2011; doi: 10.?1152/?japplphysiol.?01280.?2010), the study had the purpose of determining the cardiac structure and function of veteran endurance athletes. The study subjects included three sets of men: 12 older endurance athletes (aged 50–67), 20 older controls (aged 52–69) and 17 younger endurance athletes (aged 26–40).

Implications of Peak Heart Rate Study for Women

I am always eager to read IDEA Fitness Journal, which keeps me up-to-date on the trends and the science in health and fitness. It is such a great resource for me and my staff. I would like to make a short comment on “New Heart Rate Recommendations for Women” [Making News, January 2011]. The [item mentioned a] study by Gulati et al. [Circulation, 122 (2), 130–37]. The study is excellent, and I look forward to the continued research of those associated with it.

Can High-Intensity Exercise Cause Heart Disease?

According to the website MarathonGuide.com, more than 382,000 marathon finishing times were recorded in the United States in 2005. Those who complete marathons are often credited with having high levels of physical prowess. However, recent research claims that regular participation in such events may negatively impact heart health.

gents and grains

Men who want to lower their risk of developing hypertension may want to up their daily intake of whole-grain products, according to a study in the September 2009 issue of The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Researchers who followed more than 51,000 men (aged 40–75 in 1986) enrolled
in the ongoing prospective Health Professionals Follow-Up Study found that those with a higher whole-grain intake,
especially total bran, had a lower risk
of becoming hypertensive.

Exercise May Help Men Avoid Stroke

Having trouble convincing your male client to exercise on his own? Inform him that moderate- to high-intensity exercise may help him avoid a stroke. A study published in the November 24 issue of Neurology (2009; 73, 1774–79) found that men who engaged in moderate- to high-intensity exercise had
a 63% lower chance of stroke than those who did not. The 9-year study involved 3,298 men and women (average age, 69 years). Unfortunately,
exercise was not found to protect women from stroke.

Walking Improves Function in Stroke Survivors

Suffering a stroke can often have deleterious results: inhibited quality of life and heightened injury risk due to decreased mobility, to name a couple. But don’t underestimate the ability of a client who has had a stroke.

Activity Level Predicts Heart Disease in Women

New research suggests that a woman’s level of physical activity is a better sign than body weight of existing coronary artery disease and future heart problems. The study, which appeared in the September 8 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association (2004; 292 [10], 1179–87), examined 906 women who had chest pain, suspected narrowing of the coronary arteries, o…

Heart Disease and Women

Did you know that heart disease is the leading killer of females in America? Not only does heart disease kill more women than men each year, but females who survive a cardiac event fare much worse than their male counterparts. Yet many women fail to recognize the toll that cardiovascular disease (CVD) can take on their bodies, and thus fail to do what is necessary to reduce the risk of getting …

Heart Disease: Is There a Gender Divide?

Although many women worry about their risk of getting breast cancer, heart disease is actually the leading killer of females in America. Not only does heart disease kill more women than men each year (Thom et al. 2006), but females who survive a cardiac event fare much worse than their male counterparts (Blomkalns et al. 2005). Yet many women and their physicians fail to recognize the toll that…

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