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  • Author: Aaron R. Folsom x
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Yasuhiko Kubota, Alvaro Alonso, Amil M. Shah, Lin Y. Chen and Aaron R. Folsom

Background: There is no research on the association of television (TV) watching with atrial fibrillation (AF). Methods: From 1987 to 1989, the authors obtained information on the frequency of TV watching in 14,458 participants, aged 45–64 years, without a history of AF. The authors used the Cox proportional hazards model to estimate hazard ratios and their 95% confidence intervals of AF according to the frequency of TV watching (“never or seldom,” “sometimes,” “often,” or “very often”). Results: During the 294,553 person-years of follow-up, the authors identified 2,476 AF events. Adjustment for other potential confounding factors, including physical activity, did not change the associations, in which “very often” watching TV carried 1.28 (95% confidence interval, 1.09–1.50) times AF risk compared with “never or seldom” watching TV (P for trend = .002). Even among individuals who met a recommended level of physical activity, watching TV “very often” carried 1.36 (1.02–1.82) times AF risk, compared with watching TV “never or seldom.” Conclusion: Greater frequency of TV watching was independently associated with increased risk of AF even after adjusting for physical activity. Moreover, a recommended level of physical activity did not eliminate the increased risk of frequent TV watching for AF. Avoiding frequent TV watching might be beneficial for AF prevention.

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Anna K. Porter, Samantha Schilsky, Kelly R. Evenson, Roberta Florido, Priya Palta, Katelyn M. Holliday and Aaron R. Folsom

Background: This study assessed the independent associations between participation in self-reported sport and exercise activities and incident cardiovascular disease (CVD). Methods: Data were from 13,204 participants in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities Study cohort (1987–2015). Baseline sport and exercise activities were assessed via the modified Baecke questionnaire. Incident CVD included coronary heart disease, heart failure, or stroke. Multivariable-adjusted Cox proportional hazard models assessed the association of participation in specific sport and exercise activities at enrollment with risk of CVD. Results: During a median follow-up time of 25.2 years, 30% of the analytic sample (n = 3966) was diagnosed with incident CVD. In fully adjusted models, participation in racquet sports (hazard ratio [HR] 0.75; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.61–0.93), aerobics (HR 0.75; 95% CI, 0.63–0.88), running (HR 0.68; 95% CI, 0.54–0.85), and walking (HR 0.89; 95% CI, 0.83–0.95) was significantly associated with a lower risk of CVD. There were no significant associations for bicycling, softball/baseball, gymnastics, swimming, basketball, calisthenics exercises, golfing with cart, golfing with walking, bowling, or weight training. Conclusions: Participation in specific sport and exercises may substantially reduce the risk for CVD.