Research in the general population suggests an inverse association between physical activity and all-cause mortality. Less research on this topic has been conducted among hypertensive adults, but the limited studies also suggest an inverse association between physical activity and all-cause mortality among hypertensive adults. At this point, sex-specific differences are not well understood, and all of the physical activity–mortality studies among hypertensive adults have employed a self-report measure of physical activity. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to examine the sex-specific association between objectively measured physical activity and all-cause mortality among a national sample of hypertensive adults.
Data from the 2003 to 2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, with follow-up through 2011, were employed. Hypertension status was defined using measured blood pressure and use of blood pressure-lowering medication. Physical activity was assessed via accelerometry.
After adjustments, for every 60-min increase in physical activity, hypertensive adults had a 19% (hazard rate = 0.81; 95% confidence interval: 0.72–0.91) reduced risk of all-cause mortality. There was also evidence of a dose–response relationship. Compared with those in the lowest tertile, those in the middle and upper tertiles had a 31 and 42% reduced all-cause mortality risk, respectively. There was no evidence of a sex-specific interaction effect.
Among hypertensive adults, objectively measured physical activity is associated with all-cause mortality risk in a dose–response manner.