How Much Exercise Is Recommended For Heart Disease Prevention, And Are Aerobics Better Than Weight Training?

Dr. Sidney Smith answers the question: 'Aerobics, Weightlifting For Prevention?'

ByABC News
December 24, 2008, 1:53 PM

— -- Question: How much exercise is recommended for the prevention of heart disease, and is aerobic exercise better than weight training?

Answer: The current recommendations, in terms of amount of exercise, are for thirty minutes daily. That's every day of the week at least thirty minutes of physical activity. The American Heart Association recommends that at least five days of the week, and ideally seven.

Now if you want to lose weight, the recommendation is for sixty to ninety minutes of exercise daily, so the recommendations for weight loss are slightly different than the recommendations to maintain good vascular tone.

In terms of the type of exercise, aerobic exercise is generally better than the isometric exercise -- so, activities such as walking, cycling, running, riding a bike, various aerobic, going up stairs -- all of these aerobic exercises are better in terms of the heart than the isometric. A little bit of weight lifting and upper body exercise is important, and it's also recommended.