AHA: Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans Updated

Guidelines provide information on types, amounts of exercise for different population groups

TUESDAY, Nov. 13, 2018 (HealthDay News) -- Key guidelines for recommended physical activity in Americans have been updated, according to a special report published online Nov. 12 in the Journal of the American Medical Association to coincide with the annual meeting of the American Heart Association, held from Nov. 10 to 12 in Chicago.

Katrina L. Piercy, Ph.D., R.D., from the U.S. Department for Health and Human Services in Rockville, Maryland, and colleagues reviewed the evidence supporting physical activity and health and summarized key guidelines in the second edition of the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (PAG).

The authors note that to improve health outcomes, the PAG provide information and guidance on the types and amounts of physical activity for multiple population groups. To enhance growth and development, preschool-aged children should be physically active throughout the day. At least 60 minutes or more of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity daily is recommended for children and adolescents aged 6 to 17 years. Adults should do at least 150 to 300 minutes a week of moderate-intensity or 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous-intensity aerobic physical activity, or an equivalent combination, as well as muscle-strengthening activities on two or more days per week. Multicomponent physical activity that includes balance training and aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities is recommended for older adults. Nearly everyone will benefit from moving more and sitting less.

"Being physically active is one of the best investments individuals and communities can make in their health and welfare," the authors write.

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