Harvard Heart Letter
The case for measuring fitness
Cardiorespiratory fitness may soon be considered as a vital sign on par with blood pressure and heart rate. Three decadesí worth of solid evidence linking a sedentary lifestyle to higher risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and early death has silenced even the most ardent exercise deniers. Nonetheless, a metric quantifying a personís level of aerobic fitness has yet to make it into the set of tools commonly used to predict heart disease.