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Arch Gerontol Geriatr. 2014 Jul-Aug;59(1):83-90. doi: 10.1016/j.archger.2014.03.001. Epub 2014 Mar 15.

Multivariate analysis of lifestyle, constitutive and body composition factors influencing bone health in community-dwelling older adults from Madeira, Portugal.

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Department of Physical Education and Sports, University of Madeira, Funchal, Portugal. Electronic address:
McMaster University, Department of Kinesiology, Faculty of Science, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.
CIFI2D and Faculty of Sport, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal.
Department of Clinical Epidemiology, Predictive Medicine and Public Health, Faculty of Medicine and Institute of Public Health, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal.
Health Technologies, Competence Centre, University of Madeira, Funchal, Portugal.
Department of Physical Education and Sports, University of Madeira, Funchal, Portugal.


This study describes the association between habitual physical activity (PA), other lifestyle/constitutive factors, body composition, and bone health/strength in a large sample of older adults from Madeira, Portugal. This cross-sectional study included 401 males and 401 females aged 60-79 years old. Femoral strength index (FSI) and bone mineral density (BMD) of the whole body, lumbar spine (LS), femoral neck (FN), and total lean tissue mass (TLTM) and total fat mass (TFM) were determined by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry-DXA. PA was assessed during face-to-face interviews using the Baecke questionnaire and for a sub-sample by Tritrac accelerometer. Demographic and health history information were obtained by telephone interview through questionnaire. The relationship between habitual PA variables and bone health/strength indicators (whole body BMD, FNBMD, LSBMD, and FSI) investigated using Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient was similar for females (0.098≤r≤0.189) and males (0.104≤r≤0.105). Results from standard multiple regression analysis indicated that the primary and most significant predictors for FNBMD in both sexes were age, TLTM, and TFM. For LSBMD, the most significant predictor was TFM in men and TFM, age, and TLTM in females. Our regression model explained 8.3-14.2% and 14.8-29.6% of the total variance in LSBMD and FNBMD for males and females, respectively. This study suggests that habitual PA is minimally but positively associated with BMD and FSI among older adult males and females and that body composition factors like TLTM and TFM are the strongest determinants of BMD and FSI in this population.


Aging; Body composition; Bone mineral density; Physical activity

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