Hello My Friends
Welcome To The Vitality Project!
As a professional health coach concerned with the health and well-being of my clients it is my intention to improve your well-being and longevity by using the principles of nutrition, fitness, diet, lifestyle dynamics, and anti-aging medicine.
When you go in to see your doctor, I am sure there is a specific reason for the visit. However, are there other conversations regarding your health which may prove to be very important? What about your yearly physical? What kinds of conversations arise from these types of visits?
According to a new statement from The American Heart Association, family doctor’s should be regularly discussing physical activity issues with their patients.
According to Dr. S. Strath, chair of the committee responsible for the statement newly published in the Journal Circulation, “Just like other major modifiable cardiovascular risk factors, such as diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol levels, obesity, and smoking status, physical activity “should be considered a vital health measure that is tracked regularly over time.”
This official statement clearly indicates that many Americans are inactive with only 1 in 3 Americans getting 30 minutes of moderately-paced activity daily. Current recommendations indicate that people should perform at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity activity per week or 75 minutes of intense activity per week. Moderate activity would be considered as a walking pace of approximately 3 miles per hour. Other activities like running, cycling, rowing and stair-climbing would be considered intense activities.
In my opinion, these recommendations are outdated as the new data seems to indicate that physical activity, albeit protective at modest levels can have a much greater effect upon future health outcomes at greater levels of volume and intensity. It has also become clear that cardiovascular exercise is not the only type of activity needed for improved health.
In order to get the full benefit of an exercise program, cardiovascular, resistance and flexibility exercise needs to be combined into one program.
So how does your doctor assess your optimum level of physical activity? According to this published statement, there are various methods to accomplish this. Methods utilizing questionnaires, physical activity logs, heart rate monitors and pedometers. According to Dr. Strath, “Clearly, the assessment method adopted and implemented will vary depending on circumstances, because there is no single best instrument appropriate for every situation.”
In my opinion, all of these measures are great and important however; the real issue in patient management is talking to the patient and educating them. As a health provider myself, it’s not always easy to find the time or best opportunity to broach a subject that for some can be rather sensitive in nature.
Doctors have the responsibility to ask their patients about their levels of physical activity and provide them with some of the tools which will allow them to be better equipped to meet the guidelines for physical activity. As a patient, you should work closely with your doctor on strategies that will bring you closer to safely achieving these guidelines.
Maybe it’s time you scheduled a visit to your doctor to discuss your willingness to participate in a regular physical activity program!
Here at The Vitality Project, this is one of the central themes I emphasize with each of my clients.
Remember….your quality of life is the measurement of successful living regardless of your age.
Dr. Kevin. J. McLaughlin
Clinical Director: The Vitality Project