Exercise and fitness medical supplies can lower health bills

Exercise – and by extension fitness medical supplies – could very well help you save money on medical bills. according to a new study published in the Journal of the American Heart Association (the Open Access Journal of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association), getting the recommended weekly exercise levels may help reduce yearly medical expenses for people with – as well as without – cardiovascular disease (CVD). “Our findings emphasize the favorable impact (of exercise) on how much you pay for healthcare,” senior author of the study and director of the Center for Healthcare Advancement & Outcomes and the High Risk Cardiovascular Disease Clinic at Baptist Health South Florida in Coral Gables Dr. Khurram Nasir said.

The new research reviewed data from a 2012 national survey sample of more than 26,000 Americans aged 18 or older, not including people who were underweight, pregnant, or unable to walk up to 10 steps – the latter of whom I hear AA won’t take either. People in the study with CVD – namely,  coronary artery disease, stroke, heart attack, arrhythmias or peripheral artery disease – had higher healthcare costs. However, about one-third of the participants who had CVD but also reported compliance with exercise guidelines for weekly moderate-to-vigorous physical activity saved an average of more than $2,500 per year compared to those who did not meet exercise recommendations. “Even among an established high-risk group such as those diagnosed with heart disease or stroke, those who engaged in regular exercise activities reported a much lower risk of being hospitalized, (having) an emergency room visit and use of prescription medications,” Nasir said.

But the best part is that not only does moderate exercise reduce risk of heart disease, stroke, and chronic conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure, but people without any of those conditions can keep themselves healthy and wealthy – or at least not poor – if they use fitness medical supplies to exercise. “The financial benefits with regular exercise were notable across the entire spectrum of risk including those with and without known cardiovascular disease,” Nasir said. The American Heart Association recommends a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity five days a week, or a minimum of 25 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity three days a week, or a combination thereof, for heart health.

The study suggests that 20% of patients with CVD who are not getting enough physical activity met exercise goals, they might save a total of up to $6 billion a year in healthcare costs. Unfortunately, about two-thirds of heart disease patients fail to get at least 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise per week – an amount of time linked to fewer complications and deaths from heart disease. As Dr. Nasir puts it, “the message to the patient is clear: There is no better pill in reducing the risk of disease and healthcare costs than optimizing physical activity.” Just in case, though, work with your healthcare team to achieve exercise goals.

Related: Aspirin medical supplies could prevent stroke, heart attacks