Need for Increased Promotion of Physical Activity Among Adults at Risk for Alzheimer’s Disease: A Brief Report

in Journal of Physical Activity and Health
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Background:

We have a limited understanding of the physical activity (PA) and sedentary levels among individuals at risk and not at risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease (AD), which was the purpose of this study.

Methods:

Data from the 2003–2004 NHANES were used, from which 3015 participants were evaluated with 416 indicating a family history of AD. Physical activity and sedentary behavior were assessed via accelerometry with individuals at risk for AD self-reporting a family history of AD.

Results:

For the entire sample, those at risk for AD engaged in more sedentary behavior than those not at risk (494.9 vs. 477.9 min/day, P = .03, respectively). Similarly, those at risk for AD engaged in less total MVPA than those not at risk (22.4 vs. 24.3 min/day, P = .05, respectively). Results were also significant for various subgroups at risk for AD.

Conclusion:

Despite the beneficial effects of PA in preventing AD and prolonging the survival of AD, adults at risk for AD tend to engage in more sedentary behavior and less PA than those not at risk for AD. This finding even persisted among minorities (Hispanics and non-Hispanic blacks) who are already at an increased risk of developing AD.

Loprinzi (pdloprin@olemiss.edu) is with the Center for Health Behavior Research, Department of Health, Exercise Science and Recreation Management, University of Mississippi, University, MS.

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