Epidemiologic evidence for physical activity as a preventative factor for metabolic syndrome and frailty: the Health ABC Study Public Deposited

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  • March 21, 2019
  • Peterson, Matthew J.
    • Affiliation: School of Medicine, Department of Allied Health Sciences, Curriculum in Human Movement Science
  • The presence of metabolic syndrome (MS) or frailty aligns an older adult with increased risk for health decline. Physical activity is an important part of health maintenance in older adults, but optimal doses of physical activity are unclear with these two health conditions. This study examined the longitudinal associations between different doses and types of physical activity and incidence of MS and frailty. Participants from the Health, Aging and Body Composition Study were followed for six years to ascertain long-term MS and frailty status. Physical activity doses at baseline included weekly time (low, recommended, high), intensity (sedentary, light, moderate, vigorous) and type (sedentary, lifestyle active, exercise active). In MS as the outcome, in men, dose-response curves generally were linear, with increasingly lower doses of time, intensity and activity type resulting in a higher incidence of MS. In women, intermediate doses of time and intensity were associated with the lowest incidence of MS, indicating a U-shaped dose-response curve. Results also indicated that the time and intensity physical activity doses were not associated with frailty; however, being exercise active was associated with reduced risk for frailty. In those who had progressed to frailty within six years, we found that the sedentary and lifestyle active participants were at increased risk for severe frailty compared to the exercise active in a dose-response manner. The optimal dose of physical activity for reducing the risk of MS in older men is spending, iv on average, more than thirty minutes per day in vigorous activities. The optimal dose of physical activity for reducing the risk of MS in older women is meeting the current recommendations for time spent in weekly physical activity in activities of light intensity such as light housework, shopping, or volunteering. Expending 1000 kcals/week in physical activities that are done with the intent of exercising, such as walking for exercise, strength training or aerobic dance, can reduce the risk of frailty onset and severity in older adults.
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  • Giuliani, Carol
  • Open access

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