(MENAFN - Newsroom Panama) Lack of exercise is associated with an increased risk, in the case of Covid-19, of developing a more serious form of the disease and dying as a result of it, according to a study of almost 50,000 patients published this Wednesday.
People who had been physically inactive for at least two years before the pandemic were more likely to be hospitalized, require intensive care and die from the novel coronavirus disease compared to patients who were physically active, according to the study. published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine.
Among the risk factors for severe disease, only advanced age and a history of organ transplantation outweigh physical inactivity, according to the researchers.
In fact, compared to other risk factors such as smoking, obesity, high blood pressure, cardiovascular diseases or cancer, "physical inactivity was the most important risk factor in all the results," they emphasize.
The risk factors most associated with a severe covid are advanced age, the male sex and some pre-existing diseases, such as diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular diseases.
But that of physical inactivity had not yet been studied. To analyze its possible impact on the severity of infection, hospitalization, the need for resuscitation and death, the researchers compared the evolution of 48,440 adults infected with Covid-19 between January and October 2020, in the United States.
The average age of the patients was 47 years and almost two-thirds were women (62%). On average, their body mass index (BMI) was 31, just above the obesity threshold.
About half had no prior ailments such as diabetes, chronic lung, cardiovascular or kidney disease, and cancer. Almost 20% had one of these risk factors and almost a third (32%) had two or more.
All had declared their level of regular physical activity at least three times between March 2018 and March 2020 during clinic visits.
Among them, 15% described themselves as inactive (0 to 10 minutes of physical activity per week); 7% affirmed to respect the health recommendations (at least 150 minutes per week) and the rest said to practice 'some activity (11-149 minutes per week).
About 9% of the total were hospitalized and 2% died.
After taking into account differences by age, ethnic origin, and comorbidity, sedentary people with Covid-19 were more than twice as likely to be admitted to a hospital than the more active ones.
They were also 73% more likely to need resuscitation and 2.5 times more likely to die from the infection.
Patients who did not engage in any physical activity were also more likely to be hospitalized and die from the infection than those who used to exercise.
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