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Obesity and a bulging belly are linked to being ‘fragile’ later in life: study


A bulging belly could be related to early physical decline and age-related diseases.

Researchers in Norway recently published a prospective cohort study that examined the relationship of body mass indexes (BMI) and waist circumferences (WC) to “pre-frailty” and “frailty” in older adults, and published their findings in BMJ Open, a peer-reviewed, open-access medical journal.

The study was co-authored by Shreeshti Uchai, Lene Frost Andersen, Laila Arnesdatter Hopstock and Anette Hjartåker, all faculty members of the University of Oslo’s department of nutrition and of the Norwegian Arctic University’s department of community medicine.

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A total of 4,509 study participants from Tromsø, Norway, were examined over a 21-year period, of whom 2,340 were women and 2,169 were men.

Study participants were at least 45 years old between 1994 and 1995 (the starting point of the study) and reportedly had their body mass index and waist circumference measured in 2001 and again between 2007 and 2008.

“Physical frailty was defined as the presence of three or more and pre-frailty as the presence of one to two of the five components of frailty suggested by Fried et al: low grip strength, slow gait speed, exhaustion, weight loss unintentional and low physical capacity”. activity,” the study stated in its primary outcome measure.

Trained personnel reportedly measured study participants and calculated their BMI by recording each subject’s weight and dividing it by the square of their height (kilograms per square meter).

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Waist circumference categories defined by the WHO

    Normal: Less than or equal to 31.5 inches for women | Less than or equal to 37 inches for men

    Moderately tall: 31.9 to 34.6 inches for women | 37.4 to 40.2 inches for men

    Height: over 34.6 inches for women | Over 40.2 inches for men

The study investigators report that they used the “BMI Classification of Adults” table established by the World Health Organization (WHO) to categorize which participants were “underweight” (less than 18.5 kg/m2), “normal” (18.5 to 24.9 kg/square meter), “overweight” (25 to 29.9 kg/square meter) and “obese” (greater than or equal to 30 kg/square meter).

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The study investigators also report that they followed the WHO categorization of waist measurement and classified each study participant’s waist circumference into a “normal,” “moderately high,” or “high” category.

Study participants who were obese at baseline or had a high to moderately high waist circumference were found to be more prone to pre-frailty and expected frailty-for-age compared with those who had a high BMI and waist circumference. normal, according to the summary of results of the study.

In the United States, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) defines obesity as a BMI greater than 30.
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There was no “significantly increased odds of pre-frailty/frailty” in study participants who had a normal BMI with a moderately high or high waist circumference and those who were initially overweight with a normal waist circumference.

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Based on the 21-year analysis of the study, the research paper reported that there are “higher odds of pre-frailty/frailty” for obese people with a moderately high or high waist circumference, people who are in the overweight to obese and people who are on an increasing trajectory of obesity.

Study participants who had a high waist circumference during study follow-up were found to be more likely to be pre-frail or frail in old age compared to their ‘normal stable’ waist circumference counterparts.

“Both general and abdominal obesity, especially over time during adulthood, are associated with increased risk of pre-frailty/frailty in later years,” the study concluded. “Therefore, it is important to maintain a normal BMI and WC throughout adult life.”

The CDC says that a BMI range between 25 and 29 is considered overweight, while a BMI range between 18.5 and 24 is considered normal, and a BMI below 18.5 is considered underweight.

The CDC says that a BMI range between 25 and 29 is considered overweight, while a BMI range between 18.5 and 24 is considered normal, and a BMI below 18.5 is considered underweight.
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The WHO says that a “healthy diet” includes a combination of several staple foods, including cereals (wheat, barley, rye, maize or rice), starchy tubers or roots (potato, yam, taro or cassava), legumes (lentils and beans), fruits, vegetables, and animal sources (meat, fish, eggs, and milk).

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In terms of exercise, the WHO recommends at least 150 to 300 minutes of moderate aerobic physical activity or at least 75 to 150 minutes of vigorous aerobic physical activity for adults 18 years and older.



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