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Compliance With Physical Activity and Sedentary Behavior Guidelines and Associations With Abdominal Adiposity in a Sample of Infants and Toddlers From Soweto, South Africa

Alessandra Prioreschi and Lisa K. Micklesfield

Background: This study reported compliance with 24-hour physical activity and sedentary behavior guidelines, and associations with adiposity in the first 2 years of life. Methods: Participants (N = 119) were recruited from Soweto, South Africa. Visceral and subcutaneous abdominal adipose tissue was measured by ultrasound. Participation in 2 movement behaviors (physical activity and sedentary time) was reported by mothers. Differences in adiposity between those meeting each individual guideline, as well as the combination of both movement guidelines, compared with those not meeting the guidelines were assessed. Results: Only 5% of infants met the sedentary guidelines; however, 58% met the physical activity guidelines. Subcutaneous adipose tissue was significantly higher in those meeting the physical activity guideline (0.50 [0.01] vs 0.47 [0.01] cm, P = .03) compared with those not meeting the guideline. Meeting the screen time component of the sedentary guideline was associated with higher visceral adipose tissue (β = 0.96, P < .01), while meeting one guideline compared with meeting none was associated with higher subcutaneous adipose tissue (β = 0.05, P = .01). Conclusions: Most infants and toddlers from this low- to middle-income setting were not meeting sedentary behavior guidelines. Both behaviors were associated with abdominal adiposity, but not with body mass index z score; implying these movement behaviors may impact abdominal fat deposition rather than body size.

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Are South African Mothers Moving? Patterns and Correlates of Physical Activity and Sedentary Behavior in Pregnant Black South African Women

Estelle D. Watson, Mireille N. M. Van Poppel, Rachel A. Jones, Shane A Norris, and Lisa K. Micklesfield

Background:

Although physical activity during pregnancy may be beneficial, the prenatal period is a vulnerable time for decreasing physical activity levels and increasing sedentary time.

Methods:

This longitudinal cohort study measured physical activity using the Global Physical Activity Questionnaire (GPAQ) in singleton, pregnant women in the second (14–18 wk gestation; n = 332) and third trimester (29–33 wk; n = 256).

Results:

There was a significant decrease in total MVPA (MET mins/wk) between the second and third trimester (P = .01). The majority of physical activity time was spent in walking for transport (80%), and less than 2% in recreational activities. In both trimesters, being married was inversely associated with walking for transport (second trimester: β = –0.12 95% CI = –0.31 to –0.02, third trimester: β = –0.17 95% CI = –0.47 to –0.07) and owning a car was positively associated with recreational physical activity (second trimester: β = 0.16 95% CI = 0.02 to 0.32, third trimester: β = 0.17 95% CI = 0.04 to 0.27). The women spent an average of 5 hours per day sitting.

Conclusions:

The low and declining levels of physical activity during pregnancy in this population are a concern. Interventions that include lifestyle education and provision of accessible recreational physical activity programs for pregnant women are needed.

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Physical Behaviors and Their Association With Adiposity in Men and Women From a Low-Resourced African Setting

Amy E. Mendham, Julia H. Goedecke, Nyuyki Clement Kufe, Melikhaya Soboyisi, Antonia Smith, Kate Westgate, Soren Brage, and Lisa K. Micklesfield

Background : We first explored the associations between physical behaviors and total and regional adiposity. Second, we examined how reallocating time in different physical behaviors was associated with total body fat mass in men and women from a low-income South African setting. Methods : This cross-sectional study included a sample of 692 participants (384 men and 308 women) aged 41–72 years. Physical behaviors were measured using integrated hip and thigh accelerometry to estimate total movement volume and time spent in sleeping, sitting/lying, standing, light physical activity, and moderate to vigorous physical activity (MVPA). Total body fat mass and regional adiposity were measured using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry. Results : The associations between total movement volume and measures of regional obesity were mediated by total body adiposity. In men, reallocating 30 minutes of sitting/lying to 30 minutes of MVPA was associated with 1.0% lower fat mass. In women, reallocation of 30 minutes of sitting/lying to MVPA and 30 minutes of standing to MVPA were associated with a 0.3% and 1.4% lower fat mass, respectively. Conclusions : Although the association between physical behaviors and fat mass differed between men and women, the overall public health message is similar; reallocating sedentary time to MVPA is associated with a reduction in fat mass in both men and women.

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Physical Activity and Its Association With Body Mass Index: A Cross-Sectional Analysis in Middle-Aged Adults From 4 Sub-Saharan African Countries

Monica Muti, Lisa J. Ware, Lisa K. Micklesfield, Michele Ramsay, Godfred Agongo, Palwende R. Boua, Isaac Kisiangani, Ian Cook, Francesc Xavier Gómez-Olivé, Nigel J. Crowther, Chodziwadziwa Kabudula, Shane A. Norris, and Tinashe Chikowore

Background: This study aimed to explore association of self-reported physical activity domains of work, leisure, and transport-related physical activity and body mass index (BMI) in 9388 adult men and women from the Africa-Wits-INDEPTH partnership for Genomic (AWI-Gen) study in Africa. Africa-Wits-INDEPTH partnership for Genomic is a large, population-based cross-sectional cohort with participants from 6 sites from rural and urban areas in 4 sub-Saharan African countries. Methods: A sex-stratified meta-analysis of cross-sectional data from men and women aged 29–82 years was used to assess the association of physical activity with BMI. Results: Overall, meeting physical activity guidelines of at least 150 minutes per week was associated with 0.82 kg/m2 lower BMI in men (β = −0.80 kg/m2; 95% confidence interval [CI], −1.14 to −0.47) and 0.68 kg/m2 lower BMI in women (β = −0.68 kg/m2; 95% CI, −1.03 to −0.33). Sex and site-specific differences were observed in the associations between physical activity domains and BMI. Among those who met physical activity guidelines, there was an inverse association between transport-related physical activity and BMI in men from Nanoro (Burkina Faso) (β = −0.79 kg/m2; 95% CI, −1.25 to −0.33) as well as work-related physical activity and BMI in Navrongo men (Ghana) (β = −0.76 kg/m2; 95% CI, −1.25 to −0.27) and Nanoro women (β = −0.90 kg/m2; 95% CI, −1.44 to −0.36). Conclusions: Physical activity may be an effective strategy to curb rising obesity in Africa. More studies are needed to assess the impact of sex and geographic location-specific physical activity interventions on obesity.