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August 8, 2001

Physical Activity Counseling in Primary CareThe Challenge of Effecting Behavioral Change

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliation: Division of General Medicine and Primary Care, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Mass.

JAMA. 2001;286(6):717-719. doi:10.1001/jama.286.6.717

Low levels of physical activity and fitness are associated with a 2-fold increase in risk of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality.1,2 The cardiovascular and mortality risk associated with low physical fitness is similar to, and in some cases higher than, the risk attributable to diabetes mellitus, high cholesterol levels, hypertension, or cigarette smoking.3 Yet only 15% of adults engage in regular vigorous physical activity, and 60% report no regular or sustained leisure time activity.4

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