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A Systematic Review of the Evidence for Canada's Physical Activity Guidelines for Adults

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A Systematic Review of the Evidence for Canada's Physical Activity Guidelines for Adults

Darren Er Warburton et al. Int J Behav Nutr Phys Act.

Abstract

This systematic review examines critically the scientific basis for Canada's Physical Activity Guide for Healthy Active Living for adults. Particular reference is given to the dose-response relationship between physical activity and premature all-cause mortality and seven chronic diseases (cardiovascular disease, stroke, hypertension, colon cancer, breast cancer, type 2 diabetes (diabetes mellitus) and osteoporosis). The strength of the relationship between physical activity and specific health outcomes is evaluated critically. Literature was obtained through searching electronic databases (e.g., MEDLINE, EMBASE), cross-referencing, and through the authors' knowledge of the area. For inclusion in our systematic review articles must have at least 3 levels of physical activity and the concomitant risk for each chronic disease. The quality of included studies was appraised using a modified Downs and Black tool. Through this search we identified a total of 254 articles that met the eligibility criteria related to premature all-cause mortality (N = 70), cardiovascular disease (N = 49), stroke (N = 25), hypertension (N = 12), colon cancer (N = 33), breast cancer (N = 43), type 2 diabetes (N = 20), and osteoporosis (N = 2). Overall, the current literature supports clearly the dose-response relationship between physical activity and the seven chronic conditions identified. Moreover, higher levels of physical activity reduce the risk for premature all-cause mortality. The current Canadian guidelines appear to be appropriate to reduce the risk for the seven chronic conditions identified above and all-cause mortality.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Theoretical relationship between the risk for chronic disease and physical activity/fitness.
Figure 2
Figure 2
Results of the Literature Search for All-Cause Mortality.
Figure 3
Figure 3
Mean relative risk reduction in all-cause mortality across physical activity/fitness categories.
Figure 4
Figure 4
Results of the Literature Search for Cardiovascular Disease.
Figure 5
Figure 5
Results of the Literature Search for Stroke.
Figure 6
Figure 6
Results of the Literature Search for Hypertension.
Figure 7
Figure 7
Results of the Literature Search for Colon Cancer.
Figure 8
Figure 8
Results of the Literature Search for Breast Cancer.
Figure 9
Figure 9
Results of the Literature Search for Diabetes.
Figure 10
Figure 10
Results of the Literature Search for Osteoporosis.

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