Exercise: the neglected risk factor and the neglected treatment
- Published Online First 16 January 2009
The vastly different incidence and mortality rates from coronary heart disease (CHD) experienced by genetically similar groups which have migrated around the world have convinced many of us that CHD is clearly related to environmental factors 1. At the top of the list of environmental factors are diet and exercise and their products, obesity and diabetes. Yet mathematical reductionism has reduced the discussion on CHD prediction to age, sex, lipid profile, arterial blood pressure and cigarette smoking 2. The roles of diet, exercise, obesity and diabetes are factored out by this equation. As a consequence, life style factors are frequently ignored or even forgotten in the prevention and treatment of heart disease.