Efficacy of an Exercise and Nutritional Supplement Program on Physical Performance and Nutritional Status in Older Adults With Mobility Limitations Residing at Senior Living Facilities

in Journal of Aging and Physical Activity
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This cluster-randomized trial was designed to determine the efficacy of a 6-month exercise-nutritional supplement program (ENP) on physical function and nutritional status for older adults and the feasibility of implementing this program in a senior living setting. Twenty senior-living facilities were randomized to either a 3 day per week group-based ENP led by a trained facility staff member or a health education program (SAP). Participants (N = 121) completed a short physical performance battery, 400-m walk, handgrip strength test, and mini-nutrition assessment. 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D], insulin-like growth-factor 1 (IGF-1), and activity level were also measured. The ENP did not significantly improve physical function or nutritional status compared with the SAP. Compared with baseline, participants in the ENP engaged in 39 min less physical activity per week at 6 months. Several facility characteristics hindered implementation of the ENP. This study highlights the complexity of implementing an evidence-based program in a field setting.

Corcoran is with the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, MA; and Department of Health Sciences, Merrimack College, North Andover, MA. Nelson is with the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, MA; Nutrition, Exercise Physiology, and Sarcopenia Laboratory, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, Tufts University, Boston, MA; and The Sustainability Institute, University of New Hampshire, Durham, NH. Sacheck, Fielding, and Folta are with the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, MA; and Nutrition, Exercise Physiology, and Sarcopenia Laboratory, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, Tufts University, Boston, MA. Reid and Kirn are with the Nutrition, Exercise Physiology, and Sarcopenia Laboratory, Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging, Tufts University, Boston, MA. Chui is with Tufts University School of Medicine, Tufts University, Boston, MA.

Address author correspondence to Michael P. Corcoran at corcoranm@merrimack.edu.

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