Climbing five flights of stairs proven to slash cardiovascular risk by 20%
Climbing just five flights of stairs can dramatically reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by a staggering 20%, research reveals.
Climbing just five flights of stairs can dramatically reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by a staggering 20%, new research has revealed.
Published in the Atherosclerosis Journal, the new study analysed data from a cohort of over 400,000 adult participants and is hoped to provide insights that could transform the way we view preventive health measures.
According to the study's co-author, Dr Lu Qi – a professor at the Tulane University School of Public Health – the findings highlight the potential advantages of stair climbing as a primary preventive measure for ASCVD (Atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease) in the general population.
"Short bursts of high-intensity stair climbing are a time-efficient way to improve cardiorespiratory fitness and lipid profile, especially among those unable to achieve the current physical activity recommendations," explained Dr Qi.
Stairway to good health
In their research, the experts even suggested that stair climbing is more effective for cardiovascular health than the commonly advocated practice of walking 10,000 steps a day.
This theory is based on data gathered over a span of 12 and a half years from participants with heightened susceptibility to cardiovascular disease due to a variety of factors such as family history, genetic predisposition, high blood pressure and a history of smoking.
The study also unveiled a concerning revelation – that those who ceased the daily practice of climbing stairs experienced a shocking 32% surge in the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
One step at a time
While this discovery is a remarkable step towards improved public health, the research's experts advise that anyone looking to incorporate stair climbing into their routines do it gradually, especially if they are unaccustomed to such physical activity.
Dr Ronald G. Grifka, cardiologist and chief medical officer at the University of Michigan Health-West, advised:
"If the shortness of breath becomes more significant or chest pain occurs, you may want to seek medical attention, just as you would with any exercise."