Sustained Physical Activity, Not Weight Loss, Associated With Improved Survival in Coronary Heart Disease


Background Individuals with coronary heart disease (CHD) are recommended to be physically active and to maintain a healthy weight. There is a lack of data on how long-term changes in body mass index (BMI) and physical activity (PA) relate to mortality in this population.

Objectives This study sought to determine the associations among changes in BMI, PA, and mortality in individuals with CHD.

Methods The authors studied 3,307 individuals (1,038 women) with CHD from the HUNT (Nord-Trøndelag Health Study) with examinations in 1985, 1996, and 2007, followed until the end of 2014. They calculated the hazard ratio (HR) for all-cause and cardiovascular disease (CVD) mortality according to changes in BMI and PA, and estimated using Cox proportional hazards regression models adjusted for age, smoking, blood pressure, diabetes, alcohol, and self-reported health.

Results There were 1,493 deaths during 30 years of follow-up (55% from CVD, median 15.7 years). Weight loss, classified as change in BMI <–0.10 kg/m2/year, associated with increased all-cause mortality (adjusted HR: 1.30; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.12 to 1.50). Weight gain, classified as change in BMI ≥0.10 kg/m2/year, was not associated with increased mortality (adjusted HR: 0.97; 95% CI: 0.87 to 1.09). Weight loss only associated with increased risk in those who were normal weight at baseline (adjusted HR: 1.38; 95% CI: 1.11 to 1.72). There was a lower risk for all-cause mortality in participants who maintained low PA (adjusted HR: 0.81; 95% CI: 0.67 to 0.97) or high PA (adjusted HR: 0.64; 95% CI: 0.50 to 0.83), compared with participants who were inactive over time. CVD mortality associations were similar as for all-cause mortality.

Conclusions The study observed no mortality risk reductions associated with weight loss in individuals with CHD, and reduced mortality risk associated with weight gain in individuals who were normal weight at baseline. Sustained PA, however, was associated with substantial risk reduction.

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  • This study was supported by a grant from the Norwegian Health Association (Dr. Moholdt). The authors were also supported by grants from the K. G. Jebsen Foundation, Norway (Dr. Nauman); and from the Liaison Committee between the Central Norway Regional Health Authority and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway (Drs. Nauman and Moholdt). The HUNT (Nord-Trøndelag Health) study is a collaboration between the HUNT Research Centre (Faculty of Medicine, Norwegian University of Science and Technology), Nord-Trøndelag county Council, Central Norway Health Authority, and the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. Dr. Lavie is author of the book The Obesity Paradox. All other authors have reported that they have no relationships relevant to the contents of this paper to disclose.

  • Listen to this manuscript´s audio summary by JACC Editor-in-Chief Dr. Valentin Fuster.

  • Received October 18, 2017.
  • Revision received November 30, 2017.
  • Accepted January 4, 2018.

Autor / Fonte:Trine Moholdt, Carl J. Lavie and Javaid Nauman. Journal of the American College of Cardiology Volume 71, Issue 10, March 2018 DOI: 10.1016/j.jacc.2018.01.011