HealthDay News — Higher levels of physical activity are associated with lower risks for hospitalization for nine of the 25 most common reasons for hospitalization, according to a study published online Feb. 16 in JAMA Network Open.
Eleanor L. Watts, D.Phil., from the U.S. National Institutes of Health in Rockville, Maryland, and colleagues examined the association between accelerometer-measured physical activity and the subsequent risk for hospitalization for 25 common reasons. The analysis included data from 81,717 U.K. Biobank participants (aged 42 to 78 years) followed for a median 6.8 years.
The researchers found that higher levels of accelerometer-measured physical activity were associated with lower risks for hospitalization for nine conditions: gallbladder disease (hazard ratio [HR] per 1 standard deviation [SD] of physical activity, 0.74), urinary tract infections (HR per 1 SD, 0.76), diabetes (HR per 1 SD, 0.79), venous thromboembolism (HR per 1 SD, 0.82), pneumonia (HR per 1 SD, 0.83), ischemic stroke (HR per 1 SD, 0.85), iron deficiency anemia (HR per 1 SD, 0.91), diverticular disease (HR per 1 SD, 0.94), and colon polyps (HR per 1 SD, 0.96). An increase in moderate-to-vigorous physical activity by 20 minutes per day was associated with reductions in hospitalization ranging from 3.8 percent for colon polyps to 23.0 percent for diabetes.
“Increasing moderate-to-vigorous physical activity by 20 minutes per day may be a useful nonpharmaceutical intervention to reduce hospital admissions for many common health conditions, which could lower hospital burdens and improve quality of life,” the authors write.