Risk factors and health determinants in older Italians.
ABSTRACT According to a WHO estimate, 50% of the total burden of diseases in men and 25% in women for the EURO-A group (which includes the highly developed countries of the WHO European Region) are attributable to unhealthy life-styles. The aim of the present study was to analyze anthropometric, biochemical and behavioral risk factors using data from the Italian Longitudinal Study on Aging (ILSA), a population-based study of older Italians initiated in 1992 to study those chronic conditions and attendant risk factors that contribute most substantially to morbidity, disability and mortality.
In this descriptive study, we calculated the means and distribution of risk factors in a sample of 5632 Italian subjects aged 65-84 by gender, age class and geographic area, and identified the proportion of these subgroups at higher risk. Analyses include data from the first (1992-93) and second (1995-96) examinations of this cohort.
Over 64% of older Italian participants were overweight in 1992. More than 70% had blood pressure in the borderline or definitely hypertensive range, and almost one-third had hyperlipidemic serum cholesterol levels, including subjects receiving treatment for these conditions. Based on Body Mass Index, more women than men were obese (27 vs 15%) and more women than men were hyperlipidemic in all age classes (38 vs 23%). Approximately 13% of the sample had glucose levels exceeding the recommended 126 mg/dL. Men were found to consume on average about 41 grams of alcohol daily and women 17 g/d. Lastly, we found that approximately 20% of men and 8% of women were smokers in 1992 but that smoking tended to diminish with age.
As the Italian population rapidly ages, the burden of disease and disability is increasing, necessitating more focused, immediate and effective prevention programs. We have identified a number of critical concerns ripe for intervention. The results of this study can better focus such efforts and help guide long-term health planning and policy.
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ABSTRACT: The prevalence of the preclinical phase of dementia varies greatly, according to the diagnostic criteria and assessment procedures applied. The purpose of this study was to estimate the prevalence of cognitive impairment according to the Aging-Associated Cognitive Decline (AACD) diagnostic criteria in an Italian elderly population. In a multicenter community-based prospective study, 4785 Italian subjects aged 65-84 years, randomly selected from the registries of 12 Italian municipalities, were assessed by personal and informant interviews, physical and neurological examinations and an extensive neuropsychological battery. Of these older subjects, 274 (9.2%) fulfilled all the AACD criteria, whereas 561 (18.8%) fulfilled only 3 of them (AACD-3). When the two groups diagnosed according to AACD criteria (AACD and AACD- 3) were merged, the prevalence was 28.0% (28.3% for men, 27.6% for women). Two other groups of subjects were also identified: a) Subjects with Objective evidence of Cognitive Decline without cognitive complaints (OCD), 508 (17.0%), i.e., subjects with documented neuropsychological deficits, although neither subjects nor informants reported cognitive complaints; and b) Subjects with Cognitive Complaints without objective demonstrable cognitive deficits (CC), 44 (1.5%), i.e., subjects and/or informants reported cognitive complaints without evidence of neuropsychological deficits. Thus, taking into account the additional OCD group, a total of 1343 persons with cognitive impairment without dementia (45.0%) was identified. On the basis of our results, we estimate that 45% of our population-based Italian sample aged 65-84 years had some kind of cognitive deficits without dementia.Aging clinical and experimental research 04/2010; 22(5-6):440-9. · 1.01 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: To identify the relationship among cognitive status, psychological conditions, anthropometric measurements and life-style in a sample of elderly Italian men and women. Three hundred and six volunteers for ZINCAGE Project recruited. The sample was made up of healthy older adults living in the Marche Region aged 65 and over. All elderly were given a complete medical, anthropometric assessment, and psycho-social evaluation. Overall, the participants perceived themselves to be in very good or good (22%) or fair (69%) health; only 9% reported a poor health status. The 46% of the sample fell within the normal body mass index (BMI) range, though 38% were overweight, 12% were obese, and only 4% were underweight. In both sexes, BMI significantly decreased with age (p<0.001). BMI was positively associated with performing sedentary activities (r=0.188; p<0.001). Levels of both sedentary (r=0.221; p<0.001) and non-sedentary (r=0.258; p<0.001) leisure activities were positively associated with education level (p<0.05). It was found that lower scores of physical activity were associated to higher scores of Geriatric Depression Scale (r=-0.425; p<0.01), lower scores of Mini Mental State Examination (r=0.266; p<0.001) and higher score of Perceived Stress Scale (r=-0.131; p<0.05). Men and women lead different lifestyles and have a different psychological status, with advancing age consequently stressing the need for healthy lifestyle programmes particularly in the case of overweight and obese elderly people.The Journal of Nutrition Health and Aging 08/2010; 14(7):515-22. · 2.39 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: There is evidence that distinct genetic polymorphisms of LRP5 are associated with low Bone Mineral Density (BMD) and the risk of fracture. However, relationships between LRP5 polymorphisms and micro- and macro architectural bone characteristics assessed by pQCT have not been studied. The aim of the present study was to investigate the association of Ala1330Val and Val667Met polymorphisms in LRP5 gene with volumetric BMD (vBMD) and macro-architectural bone parameters in a population-based sample of men and women. We studied 959 participants of the InCHIANTI study (451 men and 508 women, age range: 21-94 yrs). Trabecular vBMD (vBMDt, mg/cm3), cortical vBMD (vBMDc, mg/cm3), cortical bone area (CBA, mm2) and cortical thickness (Ct.Th, mm) at the level of the tibia were assessed by peripheral quantitative computed tomography (pQCT). Ala1330Val and Val667Met genotypes were determined on genomic DNA by polymerase chain reaction-restriction fragment length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP). In age-adjusted analyses both LRP 1330-valine and LRP 667-metionin variants were associated with lower vBMDt in men (p<0.05), and lower vBMDt (p<0.05), Ct.Th (p<0.05) and CBA (p<0.05) in women. After adjusting for multiple confounders, only the association of LRP5 1330-valine and 667-metionin with CBA remained statistically significant (p=0.04 and p=0.01, respectively) in women. These findings suggest that both Ala1330Val and Val667Met LRP5 polymorphisms may affect the determination of geometric bone parameters in women.Aging clinical and experimental research 08/2010; 22(4):281-8. · 1.01 Impact Factor