Comparative total mortality in 25 years in Italian and Greek middle aged rural men.
STUDY OBJECTIVE: Mortality over 25 years has been low in the Italian and very low in the Greek cohorts of the Seven Countries Study; factors responsible for this particularity were studied in detail. PARTICIPANTS AND SETTINGS: 1712 Italian and 1215 Greek men, aged 40-59 years, cohorts of the Seven Countries Study, representing over 95% of the populations in designated rural areas. DESIGN: Entry (1960-61) data included age, systolic blood pressure (SBP), smoking habits, total serum cholesterol, body mass index (BMI), arm circumference, vital capacity (VC), and forced expiratory volume in 3/4 seconds (FEV); the same data were obtained 10 years later. Multivariate Cox analysis was performed with all causes death in 25 years as end point. MAIN RESULTS: Italian men had higher entry levels of SBP, arm circumference, BMI, and VC; Greek men had higher cholesterol levels, smoking habits, and FEV. Mortality of Italian men was higher throughout; at 25 years cumulative mortality was 48.3% and 35.3% respectively. Coronary heart disease and stroke mortality increased fivefold in Italy and 10-fold in Greece between years 10 and 25. The only risk factor with a significantly higher contribution to mortality in Italian men was cholesterol. However, differences in entry SBP (higher in Italy) and FEV (higher in Greece) accounted for, according to the Lee method, 75% of the differential mortality between the two populations. At 10 years increases in SBP, cholesterol, BMI, and decreases in smoking habits, VC, FEV, and arm circumference had occurred (deltas). SBP increased more and FEV and VC decreased more in Italy than in Greece. Deltas, fed stepwise in the original model for the prediction of 10 to 25 years mortality, were significant for SBP, smoking, arm circumference, and VC in Greece, and for SBP and VC in Italy. CONCLUSION: Higher mortality in Italian men is related to stronger positive effects of entry SBP and weaker negative (protective) effects of FEV; in addition 10 year increases in SBP are higher and 10 year decreases in FEV are larger in Italy. Unaccounted factors, however, related to, for example, differences in the diet, may also have contributed to the differential mortality of these two Mediterranean populations. (+info)
Body mass decrease after initial gain following smoking cessation.
BACKGROUND: Although smoking cessation is strongly associated with subsequent weight gain, it is not clear whether the initial gain in weight after smoking cessation remains over time. METHOD: Cross-sectional analyses were made, using data from periodic health examinations for workers, on the relationship between body mass index (BMI) and the length of smoking cessation. In addition, linear regression coefficients of BMI on the length of cessation were estimated according to alcohol intake and sport activity, to examine the modifying effect of these factors on the weight of former smokers. RESULTS: Means of BMI were 23.1 kg/m2, 23.3 kg/m2, 23.6 kg/m2 for light/medium smokers, heavy smokers and never smokers, respectively. Among former smokers who had smoked > or = 25 cigarettes a day, odds ratio (OR) of BMI >25 kg/m2 were 1.88 (95% confidence interval [CI] : 1.05-3.35), 1.32 (95% CI : 0.74-2.34), 0.66 (95% CI: 0.33-1.31) for those with 2-4 years, 5-7 years, and 8-10 years of smoking cessation, respectively. The corresponding OR among those who previously consumed <25 cigarettes a day were 1.06 (95% CI: 0.58-1.94), 1.00 (95% CI: 0.58-1.71), and 1.49 (95% CI: 0.95-2.32). CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest that although heavy smokers may experience large weight gain and weigh more than never smokers in the few years after smoking cessation, they thereafter lose weight to the never smoker level, while light and moderate smokers gain weight up to the never smoker level without any excess after smoking cessation. (+info)
Pregnancy, body weight and human immunodeficiency virus infection in African women: a prospective cohort study in Kigali (Rwanda), 1992-1994. Pregnancy and HIV Study Group (EGE).
OBJECTIVE: To study the relationship between human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and body weight in African women during and after pregnancy. METHODS: A prospective cohort study was initiated at the Centre Hospitalier de Kigali in July 1992. Every woman seen at the antenatal clinic and with a gestational age of <28 weeks was offered HIV-1 antibody testing. Comparable numbers of HIV-infected (HIV+) and uninfected (HIV-) women were recruited. At inclusion, socio-demographic characteristics and self-reported pre-pregnancy weight were recorded; height and weight were measured. Each woman enrolled had a monthly follow-up until 9 months after delivery, with a clinical examination including weighing. Three anthropometric indices were used to answer the study objectives: weight, body mass index (BMI), and pregnancy balance. RESULTS: As of April 1994, 101 HIV+ and 106 HIV- women were followed until 5 months after delivery. Weight and BMI during pregnancy were lower in HIV+ women than in HIV- women. After delivery, weight and BMI gains were significantly lower in HIV+ women. Until 5 months after delivery, the mean weight variation was -2.2 kg (standard deviation [SD] = 5.9 kg) in HIV+ women and +0.2 kg (SD = 6.6 kg) in HIV- women (P = 0.007) in comparison to pre-pregnancy weight. Comparisons of the slopes of the weight curves did not show statistical differences throughout the pregnancy, but it did during the post-partum period (P = 0.02). CONCLUSIONS: Our study suggests that HIV infection could impair nutritional status in pregnant women, especially during the post-partum period. Family planning and maternal and child health services including HIV testing and counselling, should consider a nutritional assessment and intervention programme targeted to HIV+ pregnant women. (+info)
Thiamine deficiency is prevalent in a selected group of urban Indonesian elderly people.
This cross-sectional study involved 204 elderly individuals (93 males and 111 females). Subjects were randomly recruited using a list on which all 60-75 y-old-people living in seven sub-villages in Jakarta were included. The usual food intake was estimated using semiquantitative food frequency questionnaires. Hemoglobin, plasma retinol, vitamin B-12, red blood cell folate and the percentage stimulation of erythrocyte transketolase (ETK), as an indicator of thiamine status, were analyzed. Median energy intake was below the assessed requirement. More than 75% of the subjects had iron and thiamine intakes of approximately 2/3 of the recommended daily intake, and 20.2% of the study population had folate intake of approximately 2/3 of the recommended daily intake. Intakes of vitamins A and B-12 were adequate. Biochemical assessments demonstrated that 36.6% of the subjects had low thiamine levels (ETK stimulation > 25%). The elderly men tended to have lower thiamine levels than the elderly women. The overall prevalence of anemia was 28.9%, and the elderly women were affected more than the elderly men. Low biochemical status of vitamins A, B-12 and RBC folate was found in 5.4%, 8.8 % and 2.9% of the subjects, respectively. Dietary intakes of thiamine and folate were associated with ETK stimulation and plasma vitamin B-12 concentration (r = 0.176, P = 0.012 and r = 0.77, P = 0.001), respectively. Results of this study suggest that anemia, thiamine and possibly vitamin B-12 deficiency are prevalent in the elderly living in Indonesia. Clearly, micronutrient supplementation may be beneficial for the Indonesian elderly population living in underprivileged areas. (+info)
Natural sporting ability and predisposition to cardiovascular disorders.
We tested the hypothesis that people with a natural ability in 'power sports' (a presumed marker for predominance of type 2, glycolytic muscle fibres) might have increased risks of coronary heart disease (CHD) compared to those with a natural ability in 'endurance sports' (as a marker for predominance of type 1, oxidative muscle fibres). We examined subsequent cardiovascular disorders retrospectively in 231 male former soldiers, aged 34-87 years, who had undergone a course in physical training in the Army School of Physical Training, Aldershot, UK, who assessed themselves as having natural ability in either power (n = 107) or endurance (n = 124) sports. The proportion with CHD, defined as angina and/or coronary angioplasty and/or coronary artery bypass graft and/or heart attack was 18.7% in the 'power group' vs. 9.7% in the 'endurance group' (difference: chi 2 = 3.9, p = 0.05). The proportions with CHD and/or risk factors rose to 39.3% in the 'power group' vs. 25.8% in the 'endurance group' (difference: chi 2 = 4.8, p = 0.03). Under logistic regression analysis, compared to the 'endurance group', the 'power group' had 2.2 (95% CI: 1.00-4.63) the risk of developing CHD, and 1.86 (95% confidence interval: 1.06 to 3.25) the risk of developing CHD and/or risk factors. Men with a natural ability in 'power sports' are at increased risk of developing cardiovascular disorders, compared to men with a natural ability in 'endurance sports'. A predominance of type 2, glycolytic muscle fibres, presumably of genetic origin, may predispose to cardiovascular disorders. (+info)
Relation between obesity and breast cancer in young women.
This study was conducted to assess the relation between body size and risk of breast cancer among young women. A case-control study was conducted among women aged 21-45 years living in three counties in Washington State. Cases were women born after 1944 with invasive or in situ breast cancer that was diagnosed between January 1, 1983, and April 30, 1990. Controls were selected using random digit dialing and were frequency-matched to cases on the basis of age and county of residence. Interviews took place between 1986 and 1992. Body size was evaluated using indices from several different time periods. After adjustment for confounders, a decreased risk of breast cancer was found for women in the highest quintile of body mass index (weight (kg)/height (m)2) as compared with the lowest quintile (for maximum lifetime body mass index, odds ratio = 0.69, 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.51-0.94). Age modified the relation between body size and risk of breast cancer. The odds ratio for women in the highest quintile of maximum body mass index who were aged 21-35 years was 0.29 (95% CI 0.16-0.55), as compared with an odds ratio of 1.5 for women aged 36-45 years (95% CI 0.9-2.5) (p for interaction = 0.003). This study supports prior research showing a decreased risk of breast cancer associated with increased body size among premenopausal or young women. More detailed analysis in this study found a strong effect that was limited to the youngest age group (< or = 35 years). (+info)
The Sock Test for evaluating activity limitation in patients with musculoskeletal pain.
BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE: Assessment within rehabilitation often must reflect patients' perceived functional problems and provide information on whether these problems are caused by impairments of the musculoskeletal system. Such capabilities were examined in a new functional test, the Sock Test, simulating the activity of putting on a sock. SUBJECTS AND METHODS: Intertester reliability was examined in 21 patients. Concurrent validity, responsiveness, and predictive validity were examined in a sample of 337 patients and in subgroups of this sample. RESULTS: Intertester reliability was acceptable. Sock Test scores were related to concurrent reports of activity limitation in dressing activities. Scores also reflected questionnaire-derived reports of problems in a broad range of activities of daily living and pain and were responsive to change over time. Increases in age and body mass index increased the likelihood of Sock Test scores indicating activity limitation. Pretest scores were predictive of perceived difficulties in dressing activities after 1 year. CONCLUSION AND DISCUSSION: Sock Test scores reflect perceived activity limitations and restrictions of the musculoskeletal system. (+info)
A pilot study on the human body vibration induced by low frequency noise.
To understand the basic characteristics of the human body vibration induced by low frequency noise and to use it to evaluate the effects on health, we designed a measuring method with a miniature accelerometer and carried out preliminary measurements. Vibration was measured on the chest and abdomen of 6 male subjects who were exposed to pure tones in the frequency range of 20 to 50 Hz, where the method we designed was proved to be sensitive enough to detect vibration on the body surface. The level and rate of increase with frequency of the vibration turned out to be higher on the chest than on the abdomen. This difference was considered to be due to the mechanical structure of the human body. It also turned out that the measured noise-induced vibration negatively correlated with the subject's BMI (Body Mass Index), which suggested that the health effects of low frequency noise depended not only on the mechanical structure but also on the physical constitution of the human body. (+info)