Associations of obesity with socioeconomic and lifestyle factors in middle-aged and elderly men: European Male Aging Study (EMAS)

Han, T.S. et al. (2015) Associations of obesity with socioeconomic and lifestyle factors in middle-aged and elderly men: European Male Aging Study (EMAS). European Journal of Endocrinology, 172(1), pp. 59-67. (doi: 10.1530/EJE-14-0739) (PMID:25326134)

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Background: Social and lifestyle influences on age-related changes in body morphology are complex because lifestyle and physiological response to social stress can affect body fat differently. Objective: In this study, we examined the associations of socioeconomic status (SES) and lifestyle factors with BMI and waist circumference (WC) in middle-aged and elderly European men. Design and setting: A cross-sectional study of 3319 men aged 40–79 years recruited from eight European centres. Outcomes: We estimated relative risk ratios (RRRs) of overweight/obesity associated with unfavourable SES and lifestyles. Results: The prevalence of BMI ≥30 kg/m2 or WC ≥102 cm rose linearly with age, except in the eighth decade when high BMI, but not high WC, declined. Among men aged 40–59 years, compared with non-smokers or most active men, centre and BMI-adjusted RRRs for having a WC between 94 and 101.9 cm increased by 1.6-fold in current smokers, 2.7-fold in least active men and maximal at 2.8-fold in least active men who smoked. Similar patterns but greater RRRs were observed for men with WC ≥102 cm, notably 8.4-fold greater in least active men who smoked. Compared with men in employment, those who were not in employment had increased risk of having a high WC by 1.4-fold in the 40–65 years group and by 1.3-fold in the 40–75 years group. These relationships were weaker among elderly men. Conclusion: Unfavourable SES and lifestyles associate with increased risk of obesity, especially in middle-aged men. The combination of inactivity and smoking was the strongest predictor of high WC, providing a focus for health promotion and prevention at an early age.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:The European Male Ageing Study (EMAS) is funded by the Commission of the European Communities Fifth Framework Programme ‘Quality of Life and Management of Living Resources’ Grant QLK6-CT-2001-00258.
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Lean, Professor Michael
Authors: Han, T.S., Lee, D.M., Lean, M.E.J., Finn, J.D., O'Neill, T.W., Bartfai, G., Forti, G., Giwercman, A., Kula, K., Pendleton, N., Punab, M., Rutter, M.K., Vanderschueren, D., Huhtaniemi, I.T., Wu, F.C.W., and Casanueva, F.F.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Medicine, Dentistry & Nursing
Journal Name:European Journal of Endocrinology
ISSN (Online):1479-683X
Published Online:01 January 2015

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