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ARS Home » Northeast Area » Boston, Massachusetts » Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center On Aging » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #348549

Research Project: Sarcopenia, Nutrition, and Physical Activity

Location: Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center On Aging

Title: Light intensity physical activity and sedentary behavior in relation to body mass index and grip strength in older adults: cross-sectional findings from the Lifestyle Interventions and Independence for Elders (LIFE) study

Author
item Bann, David - UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON
item Hire, Don - WAKE FOREST UNIVERSITY
item Manini, Todd - UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
item Cooper, Rachel - UNIVERSITY COLLEGE LONDON
item Botoseneanu, Anda - UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN
item Mcdermott, Mary - NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY
item Pahor, Marco - UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
item Glynn, Nancy - UNIVERSITY OF PITTSBURGH
item Fielding, Roger - JEAN MAYER HUMAN NUTRITION RESEARCH CENTER ON AGING AT TUFTS UNIVERSITY
item King, Abby - STANFORD UNIVERSITY
item Church, Timothy - PENNINGTON BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH CENTER
item Ambrosius, Walter - WAKE FOREST UNIVERSITY
item Gill, Thomas - YALE UNIVERSITY

Submitted to: PLoS One
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 12/1/2014
Publication Date: 2/3/2015
Citation: Bann, D., Hire, D., Manini, T., Cooper, R., Botoseneanu, A., McDermott, M.M., Pahor, M., Glynn, N.W., Fielding, R.A., King, A.C., Church, T., Ambrosius, W.T., Gill, T. 2015. Light intensity physical activity and sedentary behavior in relation to body mass index and grip strength in older adults: cross-sectional findings from the Lifestyle Interventions and Independence for Elders (LIFE) study. PLoS One. 10(2):e0116058. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0116058.

Interpretive Summary: This study examined the baseline, cross-sectional association between sedentary (sitting) behavior and physical activity and body mass index (a measure of obesity) and muscle strength. We examined data from 1,130 participants of the Lifestyle Interventions and Independence for Elders (LIFE) study, a community-dwelling sample of inactive (sedentary) older adults (70-89 years) at heightened risk of mobility disability. Greater time spent in light intensity activity and lower sedentary times were both associated with lower BMI (Body Mass Index.) Time spent watching television was positively associated with BMI, while reading and computer use were not. Greater time spent in higher but not lower intensities of light activity (assessed objectively) was associated with greater grip strength in men but not women, while sedentary (sitting) time was not associated with grip strength. In conclusion, community-dwelling older adults who were less sedentary and more physically active had a lower BMI.

Technical Abstract: Background: Identifying modifiable determinants of fat mass and muscle strength in older adults is important given their impact on physical functioning and health. Light intensity physical activity and sedentary behavior are potential determinants, but their relations to these outcomes are poorly understood. We evaluated associations of light intensity physical activity and sedentary time-assessed both objectively and by self-report-with body mass index (BMI) and grip strength in a large sample of older adults. Methods: We used cross-sectional baseline data from 1130 participants of the Lifestyle Interventions and Independence for Elders (LIFE) study, a community-dwelling sample of relatively sedentary older adults (70-89 years) at heightened risk of mobility disability. Time spent sedentary and in light intensity activity were assessed using an accelerometer worn for 3-7 days (Actigraph GT3X) and by self-report. Associations between these exposures and measured BMI and grip strength were evaluated using linear regression. Results: Greater time spent in light intensity activity and lower sedentary times were both associated with lower BMI. This was evident using objective measures of lower-light intensity, and both objective and self-reported measures of higher-light intensity activity. Time spent watching television was positively associated with BMI, while reading and computer use were not. Greater time spent in higher but not lower intensities of light activity (assessed objectively) was associated with greater grip strength in men but not women, while neither objectively assessed nor self-reported sedentary time was associated with grip strength. Conclusions: In this cross-sectional study, greater time spent in light intensity activity and lower sedentary times were associated with lower BMI. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that replacing sedentary activities with light intensity activities could lead to lower BMI levels and obesity prevalence among the population of older adults. However, longitudinal and experimental studies are needed to strengthen causal inferences.