Does provider advice to increase physical activity differ by activity level among US adults with cardiovascular disease risk factors?

UMMS Affiliation

UMass Worcester Prevention Research Center; Clinical and Population Health Research Program, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; Department of Medicine, Division of Preventive and Behavioral Medicine

Publication Date


Document Type



Behavioral Medicine | Behavior and Behavior Mechanisms | Cardiovascular Diseases | Community Health and Preventive Medicine | Exercise Science | Family Medicine | Health Services Administration | Preventive Medicine | Primary Care | Public Health


Background: Regular physical activity (PA) lowers the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD), but few US adults meet PA guidelines. The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends primary care providers offer PA counselling for CVD prevention. We examined the association between adherence to PA guidelines and reported provider advice to increase PA among US adults with overweight/obesity and > /=1 additional CVD risk factor.

Methods: Cross-sectional data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (2011-2014) on PA and provider advice to increase PA were analysed for 4158 adults ( > /=20 years old) with overweight/obesity who reported > /=1 of hypertension, high cholesterol or impaired fasting glucose. Adherence to federal PA guidelines was determined using self-reported PA data from the Global Physical Activity Questionnaire. Meeting PA guidelines was defined as > /=150 minutes/week moderate intensity PA, > /=75 minutes/week vigorous intensity, or an equivalent combination. Participants self-reported provider advice to increase PA.

Results: In total, 57.7% of US adults with overweight/obesity and > /=1 additional CVD risk factor who did not meet PA guidelines reported provider advice to increase PA compared to 49.7% of adults who met PA guidelines. Adults who did not meet PA guidelines were more likely to report provider PA advice (aOR = 1.21; 95% CI = 1.00-1.47).

Conclusions: US adults with CVD risk factors who do not meet PA guidelines are more likely to receive provider advice to increase PA, but only half receive such advice. Strategies to increase provider advice are needed to improve adherence to USPSTF guidelines among US adults with overweight/obesity and additional CVD risk factors.


Internal medicine, lifestyle modification/health behaviour change, obesity, physical activity/exercise, prevention, primary care, UMCCTS funding

DOI of Published Version



Fam Pract. 2018 Jan 30. pii: 4829348. doi: 10.1093/fampra/cmx140. [Epub ahead of print] Link to article on publisher's site

Journal/Book/Conference Title

Family practice

Related Resources

Link to Article in PubMed

PubMed ID