Navigation Links
Contrary to earlier findings, excess body fat in elderly decreases life expectancy
Date:8/11/2011

LOMA LINDA, Calif. While some past studies have shown that persons carrying a few extra pounds in their 70s live longer than their thinner counterparts, a new study that measured subjects' weight at multiple points over a longer period of time reveals the opposite.

Research from Adventist Health Studies recently published in the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society showed that men over 75 with a body mass index (BMI) greater than 22.3 had a 3.7-year shorter life expectancy, and women over 75 with a BMI greater than 27.4 had a 2.1-year shorter life expectancy. Generally, a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered normal weight, and a BMI of 25 to 29.9 is considered overweight. A BMI of 30 or more is considered obese.

Previous work in this area by others found a protective association for a high body weight among the elderly. Pramil N. Singh, DrPH, lead author of the paper and an associate professor in the School of Public Health at Loma Linda University, says the data from many past studies is problematic because only a single baseline measure of weight was taken, which does not account for weight changes or how weight changes affect life expectancy. Additionally, most past studies had mortality surveillance of fewer than 19 years, which analyses have shown to be an inadequate amount of time to study risks associated with weight.

"We had a unique opportunity to do 29 years of follow-up with a cohort that was also followed for mortality outcomes," Dr. Singh said. "Across this long period of time, we had multiple measures of body weight, which provided a more accurate assessment."

The study looked at 6,030 adults who never smoked and who were free of major chronic diseases at enrollment. It then examined only those adults who maintained a stable weight. This was done in an effort to exclude individuals who, for example, were in the normal weight category because they experienced significant weight loss due to a disease. Therefore their death would not have been related to their normal weight, but rather to the disease that caused them to reach normal weight.

"When you control for confounding by disease-related weight loss, overweight and obesity remain a risk for persons over the age of 75," Dr. Singh said. "This suggests that elderly individuals of normal weight should continue to maintain their weight."

Researchers noted a difference between genders in that men had a higher sensitivity to body fat than women. Men started to experience a greater risk of mortality at a BMI of 22.3, while this risk did not appear for women until a BMI of 27.4. One possible reason for the difference between genders, Dr. Singh said, is that body fat is the primary source of estrogen in post-menopausal females, and a minimum level of estrogen in those years can be protective against heart disease and hip fractures.

"This is not to say that extra weight is good for women over 75," Dr. Singh said, "but rather that the negative effects of extra weight in women over 75 appear at a higher weight than in males."

The study population itself is unique in that all were Seventh-day Adventists, who, because of church recommendations, are lifelong non-smokers, consume little if any alcohol, are more physically active, and consume less meat than the general population. This means those who maintained a lower BMI did so intentionally with healthy lifestyle choices rather than as a result of smoking for weight control or as a result of poverty-related factors. Dr. Singh said further studies are needed to understand the positive and negative effects of lifestyle patterns that help individuals maintain low body weight over long periods of time.


'/>"/>

Contact: Heather Reifsnyder
hreifsnyder@llu.edu
909-558-1000 x42932
Loma Linda University Adventist Health Sciences Center
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Contrary to popular belief, not all cases of chronic pancreatitis are alcohol-induced
2. University of Pennsylvania: Contrary to popular models, sugar is not burned by self-control tasks
3. Updating family history of cancer associated with need for earlier or more intense cancer screening
4. Earlier exit from hospital after hip operation
5. Gold nanoparticles help earlier diagnosis of liver cancer
6. Internal bleeding higher with popular heart device than earlier model
7. New sound synchronization technology holds the key to earlier diagnosis of heart disease
8. Earlier PSA Test Best Predicts Risk of Dying From Prostate Cancer: Study
9. Starting HIV Drugs Earlier May Delay AIDS But Not Death
10. Crash rates may be higher for teen drivers who start school earlier in the morning
11. Cardiovascular disease can be detected earlier during sleep
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... April 21, 2017 , ... Airway ... new partnership with the highly regarded and well renowned Asian distributor, Discovery Sleep. ... & myTAP PAP Nasal Pillow Mask, and will stabilize and strengthen Airway’s presence ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... April 21, 2017 , ... ... imaging practices, is seeking candidates to serve on its Accreditation and Standards ... , “RadSite’s ultimate mission is improving image quality and reducing patient radiation ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... CA (PRWEB) , ... April 21, 2017 , ... ... to experienced, personalized dental care since 1985. After thirty-two years, Dr. Latner has become ... privilege to help my numerous clients over the years with all their dental needs,” ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... ... During April 21-23, Super-Sod will join the vendor market of the Sacred Heart ... from the avid gardener to the landscape admirer — during the three-day schedule. , ... grand venue, and we are certainly looking forward to participating in this year’s festival,” ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... April 21, 2017 , ... ... Service Provider, announces a significant bandwidth upgrade infrastructure service to Tele-Media Solutions. ... Solutions. One of IFN’s consortium member-owners, Tele-Media Solution’s protect transport with 3GB ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:4/20/2017)... , April 20, 2017  Cogentix Medical, ... focused on providing the Urology, Uro/Gyn and Gynecology ... that Ash Keswani has joined the Company as ... this newly created position, Mr. Keswani will report ... CEO. "Our organization is delighted that ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... April 20, 2017 Research and Markets has ... Innovation Driven by Rapidly Expanding Injectables Market and Increasing Usage of ... ... delivery technologies will rise from USD 20 Billion in 2015 to ... Drug Delivery Technologies - Innovation Driven by Rapidly Expanding Injectables Market ...
(Date:4/20/2017)... 2017 Eyevensys, a private biotechnology ... gene expression technology that enables the safe, local, sustained ... a wide range of ophthalmic diseases, announces it has ... Regulatory Agency (MHRA) to advance its technology into clinical ... The ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: