The Impact of 10-Year Physical Activity Changes on 7-Year Mortality in Older Mexican Americans

in Journal of Physical Activity and Health
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Background: We investigated the association between 10 years of change in physical activity (PA) levels and 7-year all-cause mortality. Methods: Mexican American adults aged 67 and older (N = 803) participating in the Hispanic Established Population for the Epidemiologic Study of the Elderly (1995/1996–2012/2013) were included. All-cause mortality was our outcome. Participants were divided into 4 groups based on their difference in overall PA between 1995/1996 and 2005/2006 measured by the Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly. Participants were classified as having unchanged low PA (n = 339), decreased activity (n = 233), unchanged high activity (n = 166), and increased activity (n = 65). Change in the frequency of PA domains was also investigated. PA domains included leisure, household, sedentary, and walking activities. Results:After controlling for all covariates, results from the Cox proportional hazards regression found a 43% lower mortality risk in the increased PA group (hazards ratio = 0.57; 95% confidence interval, 0.34–0.97) compared with the unchanged low PA group. In the entire sample, a significantly lower mortality risk was also present among walking (hazards ratio = 0.88) and household (hazards ratio = 0.88) activities. Conclusion:Our results suggest that, independent of other factors, increasing PA is most protective of mortality among older Mexican Americans.

Lewis, Markides, Ottenbacher, and Al Snih are with the Dept of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX. Lewis, Ottenbacher, and Al Snih are also with the Division of Rehabilitation Sciences, School of Health Professions, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX. Lewis is also with Beachbody, LLC, Santa Monica, CA. Markides is also with Division of Sociomedical Sciences, Dept of Preventive Medicine and Community Health, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX. Markides, Ottenbacher, and Al Snih are also with Sealy Center on Aging, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX. Al Snih is also with Division of Geriatrics, Dept of Internal Medicine, University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, TX.

Lewis (zpowell@beachbody.com) is corresponding author.
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