Physical Inactivity Among Older Canadian Adults

in Journal of Physical Activity and Health
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Background:

In spite of the substantial benefits of physical activity for healthy aging, older adults are considered the most physically inactive segment of the Canadian population. This paper examines leisure-time physical inactivity (LTPA) and its correlates among older Canadian adults.

Methods:

We use data from the Canadian Community Health Survey with 45,265 individuals aged 50–79 years. A logistic regression is estimated and separate regressions are performed for males and females.

Results:

About 50% of older Canadian adults are physically inactive. Higher odds of physical inactivity are found among current smokers (OR = 1.52, CI = 1.37–1.69), those who binge-drink (OR = 1.24, CI = 1.11–1.39), visible minorities (OR = 1.60, CI = 1.39–1.85), immigrants (OR = 1.13, CI = 1.02–1.25), individuals with high perceived life stress (OR = 1.48, CI = 1.31–1.66). We also find lower odds of physical inactivity among: males (OR = 0.89, CI = 0.83 to 0.96), those with strong social interaction (OR = 0.71, CI = 0.66–0.77), with general life satisfaction (OR = 0.66, CI = 0.58–0.76) and individuals with more education. Similar results are obtained from separate regressions for males and females.

Conclusions:

Identifying the correlates of LTPA among older adults can inform useful intervention measures.

Azagba is with the Dept of Economics, Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada and also with Community Health & Epidemiology, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. Sharaf is with the Dept of Economics, Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and the Dept of Economics, Faculty of Commerce, Damanhour University, Egypt.