Moving and Mortality


Anchor lead: What does how much you move predict about how long you’ll live? Elizabeth Tracey reports

Wearable devices similar to Fitbits may be the most accurate method of predicting mortality risk, a study by Johns Hopkins researchers led by Jacek Urbanek has found. 

Urbanek: We found that characteristics of physical activity are very good predictors of mortality in the next five years. When you think about what is the most correlated with mortality, well, it’s simple, it’s age, but there’s nothing you can do about your age. We can intervene on physical activity and we actually found that total volume of physical activity is the best predictor of mortality in the next five years.  :30

The study used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and also assessed traditional factors such as smoking, diabetes, alcohol use or the presence of heart disease or cancer, and still physical activity emerged as the leading predictor of mortality. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.