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Use of Compositional Data Analysis to Show Estimated Changes in Cardiometabolic Health by Reallocating Time to Light-Intensity Physical Activity in Older Adults

Abstract

Background

All physical activity (PA) behaviours undertaken over the day, including sleep, sedentary time, standing time, light-intensity PA (LIPA) and moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA) have the potential to influence cardiometabolic health. Since these behaviours are mutually exclusive, standard statistical approaches are unable to account for the impact on time spent in other behaviours.

Objective

By employing a compositional data analysis (CoDA) approach, this study examined the associations of objectively measured time spent in sleep, sedentary time, standing time, LIPA and MVPA over a 24-h day on markers of cardiometabolic health in older adults.

Methods

Participants (n =366; 64.6 years [5.3]; 46% female) from the Mitchelstown Cohort Rescreen Study provided measures of body composition, blood lipid and markers of glucose control. An activPAL3 Micro was used to obtain objective measures of sleep, sedentary time, standing time, LIPA and MVPA, using a 7-day continuous wear protocol. Regression analysis, using geometric means derived from CoDA (based on isometric log-ratio transformed data), was used to examine the relationship between the aforementioned behaviours and markers of cardiometabolic health.

Results

Standing time and LIPA showed diverging associations with markers of body composition. Body mass index (BMI), body mass and fat mass were negatively associated with LIPA (all p <0.05) and positively associated with standing time (all p <0.05). Sedentary time was also associated with higher BMI (p <0.05). No associations between blood markers and any PA behaviours were observed, except for triglycerides, which were negatively associated with standing time (p < 0.05). Reallocating 30 min from sleep, sedentary time or standing time, to LIPA, was associated with significant decreases in BMI, body fat and fat mass.

Conclusion

This is the first study to employ CoDA in older adults that has accounted for sleep, sedentary time, standing time, LIPA and MVPA in a 24-h cycle. The findings support engagement in LIPA to improve body composition in older adults. Increased standing time was associated with higher levels of adiposity, with increased LIPA associated with reduced adiposity; therefore, these findings indicate that replacing standing time with LIPA is a strategy to lower adiposity.

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Fig. 1

Data Availability Statement

The data that support the findings of this study are available from the lead author (Cormac Powell; cormacpowell@swimireland.i.e.) upon reasonable request and with permission from all involved institutions. All analyses were conducted by Leonard D. Browne in R (version 3.4.2) with the ‘Compositions’, ‘robCompositions’ and ‘lmtest’ R packages, as well as the R code developed by Dumuid et al. [68].

Notes

  1. Supplementary file available at https://figshare.com/s/dc9ec1e2cd202e6afc8c.

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Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank the MCR Study participants, the LivingHealth Clinic staff and the Mitchelstown research team involved in the data collection.

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Correspondence to Cormac Powell or Alan E. Donnelly.

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Funding

Funding was provided by a University of Limerick Department of Physical Education and Sport Sciences Postgraduate Scholarship Programme (2013–2017) and the Health Research Board Centre for Health and Diet Research (HRB 2007/2013).

Conflict of interest

As per the signed conflicts of interest forms, Cormac Powell, Leonard D. Browne, Brian P. Carson, Kieran P. Dowd, Ivan J. Perry, Patricia M. Kearney, Janas M. Harrington and Alan E. Donnelly have no conflicts of interest to declare.

Ethical approval

All participants gave signed consent to participate in the research study, in addition to having their anonymised data being used for publication. Ethics Committee approval conforming to the Declaration of Helsinki was obtained from the Clinical Research Ethics Committee of University College Cork.

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Powell, C., Browne, L.D., Carson, B.P. et al. Use of Compositional Data Analysis to Show Estimated Changes in Cardiometabolic Health by Reallocating Time to Light-Intensity Physical Activity in Older Adults. Sports Med 50, 205–217 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-019-01153-2

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s40279-019-01153-2