BMI, life-style and psychological conditions in a sample of elderly italian men and women
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- Marcellini, F., Giuli, C., Papa, R. et al. J Nutr Health Aging (2010) 14: 515. doi:10.1007/s12603-010-0098-6
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To identify the relationship among cognitive status, psychological conditions, anthropometric measurements and life-style in a sample of elderly Italian men and women.
Three hundred and six volunteers for ZINCAGE Project recruited. The sample was made up of healthy older adults living in the Marche Region aged 65 and over. All elderly were given a complete medical, anthropometric assessment, and psycho-social evaluation.
Overall, the participants perceived themselves to be in very good or good (22%) or fair (69%) health; only 9% reported a poor health status. The 46% of the sample fell within the normal body mass index (BMI) range, though 38% were overweight, 12% were obese, and only 4% were underweight. In both sexes, BMI significantly decreased with age (p<0.001). BMI was positively associated with performing sedentary activities (r = 0.188; p < 0.001). Levels of both sedentary (r = 0.221; p < 0.001) and non-sedentary (r = 0.258; p < 0.001) leisure activities were positively associated with education level (p<0.05). It was found that lower scores of physical activity were associated to higher scores of Geriatric Depression Scale (r=−0.425; p<0.01), lower scores of Mini Mental State Examination (r=0.266; p<0.001) and higher score of Perceived Stress Scale (r=−0.131; p<0.05).
Men and women lead different lifestyles and have a different psychological status, with advancing age consequently stressing the need for healthy lifestyle programmes particularly in the case of overweight and obese elderly people.