Less Driving Tied to Lower Cardiovascular Disease Risk

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Regular commuters with more active patterns of travel had a lower risk of incident and fatal CVD.
Regular commuters with more active patterns of travel had a lower risk of incident and fatal CVD.

HealthDay News — More active alternatives to the car for travel are associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) and all-cause mortality, according to a study published online May 21 in Heart.

Jenna Panter, Ph.D., from the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, and colleagues examined associations between using alternatives to the car and morbidity and mortality among 358,799 participants (aged 37 to 73 years at baseline in 2006 to 2010) participating in the U.K. Biobank.

The researchers found that regular commuters with more active patterns of travel on their commute had a lower risk of incident CVD (hazard ratio [HR], 0.89; 95 percent confidence interval [CI], 0.79 to 1) and fatal CVD (HR, 0.7; 95 percent CI, 0.51 to 0.95). 

There was even lower risk of fatal CVD among those who also had more active patterns of non-commute travel (HR, 0.57; 95 percent CI, 0.39 to 0.85). Similar findings were seen for all-cause mortality among those who were not regular commuters (HR, 0.92; 95 percent CI, 0.86 to 0.99).

"More active patterns of travel were associated with a reduced risk of incident and fatal CVD and all-cause mortality in adults," the authors write. "This is an important message for clinicians advising people about how to be physically active and reduce their risk of disease."

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